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CHAPTER II.

Tell arts they have no soundness,
But vary by esteeming;

Tell schools they want profoundness,
And stand too much on seeming.

If arts and schools reply,

Give arts and schools the lie.-The Soul's Errand.

Ar ten years old I went to Eton. I had been educated till that period by my mother, who, being distantly related to Lord (who had published "Hints upon the Culinary Art"), imagined she possessed an hereditary claim to literary distinction. History was her great forte; for she had read all the historical romances of the day; and history accordingly I had been carefully taught. I think at this moment I see my mother before me, reclining on her sofa, and repeating to me some story about Queen Elizabeth and Lord Essex; then telling me, in a languid voice, as she sank back with the exertion, of the blessings of a literary taste, and admonishing me never to read above half an hour at a time for fear of losing my health.

and more ambition. She made her house one of the most attractive in London. Seldom seen at large assemblies, she was eagerly sought after in the well-winnowed soirées of the elect. Her wealth, great as it was, seemed the least prominent ingredient of her establishment. There was in it no uncalled-for ostentation-no purseproud vulgarity—no cringing to great, and no patronising condescension to little people; even the Sunday newspapers could not find fault with her, and the querulous wives of younger brothers could only sneer and be silent.

"It is an excellent connexion," said my mother, when I told her of my friendship with Reginald Glanville," and will be of more use to you than many of greater apparent consequence. Remember, my dear, that in all the friends you make at present, you look to the advantage you can derive from them hereafter; that is what we call knowledge of the world, and it is to get the knowledge of the world that you are sent to a public school."

Well, to Eton I went; and the second day I had been there, I was half killed for refusing, with all the pride of a Pelham, to wash tea-cups. I was rescued from the clutches of my tyrant by a boy not much bigger than myself, but reckoned the best fighter, for his size, in the whole school. His name was Reginald Glanville: from that period, we became notwithstanding my mother's instrucinseparable, and our friendship lasted all the time he stayed at Eton, which was within a year of my own departure for Cambridge.

His father was a baronet, of a very ancient and wealthy family; and his mother was a woman of some talent

I think, however, to my shame, that

tions, very few prudential considerations were mingled with my friendship for Reginald Glanville. I loved him with a warmth of attachment, which has since surprised even myself.

He was of a very singular character: he used to wander by the river in the

bright days of summer, when all else were at play, without any companion but his own thoughts; and these were tinged, even at that early age, with a deep and impassioned melancholy. He was so reserved in his manner, that it was looked upon as coldness or pride, and was repaid as such by a pretty general dislike. Yet to those he loved, no one could be more open and warm; more watchful to gratify others, more indifferent to gratification for himself; an utter absence of all selfishness, and an eager and active benevolence, were indeed the distinguishing traits of his character. I have seen him endure with a careless goodnature the most provoking affronts from boys much less than himself; but if I, or any other of his immediate friends, was injured or aggrieved, his anger was almost implacable. Although he was of a slight frame, yet early exercise had brought strength to his muscles, and activity to his limbs; while there was that in his courage and will which, despite his reserve and unpopularity, always marked him out as a leader in those enterprises, wherein we test as boys the qualities which chiefly contribute to secure hereafter our position amongst men.

Such, briefly and imperfectly sketched, was the character of Reginald Glanville-the one, who, of all my early companions differed the most from myself; yet the one whom I loved the most, and the one whose future destiny was the most intertwined with my own.

I was in the head class when I left Eton. As I was reckoned an uncommonly well-educated boy, it may not be ungratifying to the admirers of the present system of education to pause here for a moment, and recal what I then knew. I could make fifty Latin verses in half an hour; I could construe, without an English translation, all the easy Latin authors, and many of the difficult ones, with it: I could

never

read Greek fluently, and even translate it through the medium of the Latin version technically called a crib.* I was thought exceedingly clever, for I had been only eight years acquiring all this fund of information, which, as one need never recal it in the world, you have every right to suppose that I had entirely forgotten before I was five-and-twenty. As I was taught a syllable of English during this period; as, when I once attempted to read Pope's poems out of school hours, I was laughed at, and called "a sap;" as my mother, when I went to school, renounced her own instructions; and as, whatever schoolmasters may think to the contrary, one learns nothing now-a-days by inspiration: so of everything which relates to English literature, English laws, and English history (with the exception of the said story of Queen Elizabeth and Lord Essex), you have the same right to suppose that I was, at the age of eighteen, when I left Eton, in the profoundest ignorance.

At this age, I was transplanted to Cambridge, where I bloomed for two years in the blue and silver of a fellow commoner of Trinity. At the end of that time (being of royal descent) I became entitled to an honorary degree. I suppose the term is in contradistinction to an honourable degree, which is obtained by pale men in spectacles and cotton stockings, after thirty-six months of intense application.

I do not exactly remember how I spent my time at Cambridge. I had a piano-forte in my room, and a private

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billiard-room at a village two miles by the hand, "your conduct has been off; and, between these resources, I most exemplary; you have not walked managed to improve my mind more wantonly over the college grassplats, than could reasonably have been ex- nor set your dog at the proctor-nor pected. To say truth, the whole place driven tandems by day, nor broken reeked with vulgarity. The men lamps by night-nor entered the drank beer by the gallon, and ate chapel in order to display your intoxicheese by the hundred weight-wore cation-nor the lecture-room, in order jockey-cut coats, and talked slang-to caricature the professors. This is rode for wagers, and swore when they lost-smoked in your face, and expectorated on the floor. Their proudest glory was to drive the mail-their mightiest exploit to box with the coachman-their most delicate amour to leer at the barmaid.*

It will be believed, that I.felt little regret in quitting companions of this description. I went to take leave of our college tutor. "Mr. Pelham," said he, affectionately squeezing me

the general behaviour of young men of family, and fortune; but it has not been your's. Sir, you have been an honour to your college."

Thus closed my academical career. He who does not allow that it passed creditably to my teachers, profitably to myself, and beneficially to the world, is a narrow-minded and illiterate man, who knows nothing of the advantages of modern education.

CHAPTER III.

Thus does a false ambition rule us,

Thus pomp delude, and folly fool us.-SHENSTONE.

An open house, haunted with great resort.-BISHOP HALL'S Satires.

I LEFT Cambridge in a very weak | and his ancestors had for centuries state of health; and as nobody had resided on their estates in Norfolk. yet come to London, I accepted the invitation of Sir Lionel Garrett to pay him a visit at his country seat. Accordingly, one raw winter's day, full of the hopes of the reviving influence of air and exercise, I found myself carefully packed up in three great coats, and on the high road to Garrett Park.

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Sir Lionel, who came to his majority and his fortune at the same time, went up to London at the age of twenty-one, a raw, uncouth sort of young man, with a green coat and lank hair. His friends in town were of that set whose members are above ton, whenever they do not grasp at its possession, but who, whenever they do, lose at once their aim and their equilibrium, and fall immeasurably below it. I mean that set which I call "the respectable," consisting of old peers of an old school; country gentlemen, who still disdain not to love their wine and to hate the French; generals who have served in the army; elder brothers who succeed

to something besides a mortgage; and younger brothers who do not mistake their capital for their income. To this set you may add the whole of the baronetage-for I have remarked that baronets hang together like bees or Scotchmen; and if I go to a baronet's house, and speak to some one whom I have not the happiness to know, I always say "Sir John!"

It was no wonder, then, that to this set belonged Sir Lionel Garrett-no more the youth with a green coat and lank hair, but pinched in, and curled out abounding in horses and whiskers-dancing all night-lounging all day-the favourite of the old ladies, the Philander of the young.

good society-he imagined she commanded it; she was a hanger on-he believed she was a leader. Lady Harriet was crafty and twenty-fourhad no objection to be married, nor to change the name of Woodstock for Garrett. She kept up the baronet's mistake till it was too late to repair it.

Marriage did not bring Sir Lionel wisdom. His wife was of the same turn of mind as himself: they might have been great people in the country

they preferred being little people in town. They might have chosen friends among persons of respectability and rank - they preferred being chosen as acquaintance by persons of ton. Society was their being's end and One unfortunate evening Sir Lionel aim, and the only thing which brought Garrett was introduced to the cele- them pleasure was the pain of attainbrated Duchess of D. From that ing it. Did I not say truly that I moment his head was turned. Before would describe individuals of a comthen, he had always imagined that he mon species? Is there one who reads was somebody that he was Sir Lionel this, who does not recognise that Garrett, with a good looking person overflowing class of our population, and eight thousand a-year; he now whose members would conceive it an knew that he was nobody, unless he insult to be thought of sufficient rank went to Lady G.'s, and unless he to be respectable for what they are? bowed to Lady S. Disdaining all-who take it as an honour that they importance derived from himself, it are made by their acquaintance?became absolutely necessary to his who renounce the ease of living for happiness, that all his importance themselves, for the trouble of living should be derived solely from his ac- for persons who care not a pin for quaintance with others. He cared their existence-who are wretched if not a straw that he was a man of they are not dictated to by othersfortune, of family, of consequence; he and who toil, groan, travail, through must be a man of ton; or he was an the whole course of life, in order to atom, a nonentity, a very worm, and forfeit their independence? no man. No lawyer at Gray's Inn, no galley slave at the oar, ever worked so hard at his task as Sir Lionel Garrett at his. Ton, to a single man, is a thing attainable enough. Sir Lionel was just gaining the envied distinction, when he saw, courted, and married Lady Harriet Woodstock.

His new wife was of a modern and not very rich family, and striving like Sir Lionel for the notoriety of fashion; but of this struggle he was ignorant. He saw her admitted into

I arrived at Garrett Park just time enough to dress for dinner. As I was descending the stairs after having performed that ceremony, I heard my own name pronounced by a very soft, lisping voice-" Henry Pelham! dear, what a pretty name. Is he handsome?"

"Rather elegant than handsome," was the unsatisfactory reply, couched in a slow, pompous accent, which I immediately recognised to belong to Lady Harriet Garrett.

"Can we make something of him?" | had never once been known to say a resumed the first voice.

"Something!" said Lady Harriet, indignantly; "he will be Lord Glenmorris! and he is son to Lady Frances Pelham."

"Ah," said the lisper, carelessly; "but can he write poetry, and play proverbes?"

"No, Lady Harriet," said I, advancing; "but permit me, through you, to assure Lady Nelthorpe that he can admire those who do."

"So you know me then?" said the lisper: "I see we shall be excellent friends;" and, disengaging herself from Lady Harriet, she took my arm, and began discussing persons and things, poetry and china, French plays and music, till I found myself beside her at dinner, and most assiduously endeavouring to silence her by the superior engrossments of a béchamelle de poisson.

I took the opportunity of the pause, to survey the little circle of which Lady Harriet was the centre. In the first place, there was Mr. Davison, a great political economist, a short, dark, corpulent gentleman, with a quiet, serene, sleepy countenance; beside him was a quick, sharp little woman, all sparkle and bustle, glancing a small, grey, prying eye round the table, with a most restless activity: this, as Lady Nelthorpe afterwards informed me, was a Miss Trafford, an excellent person for a Christmas in the country, whom everybody was dying to have: she was an admirable mimic, an admirable actress, and an admirable reciter; made poetry and shoes, and told fortunes by the cards, which actually came true!

There was also Mr. Wormwood, the noli-me-tangere of literary lions-an author who sowed his conversation not with flowers but thorns. Nobody could accuse him of the flattery generally imputed to his species: through the course of a long and varied life, he

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civil thing. He was too much disliked not be sought after; whatever is once notorious, even for being disagreeable, is sure to be courted. Opposite to him sat the really clever, and affectedly pedantic Lord Vincent, one of those persons who have been "promising young men all their lives; who are found till four o'clock in the afternoon in a dressing-gown, with a quarto before them; who go down into the country for six weeks every session, to cram an impromptu reply; and who always have a work in the press which is never to be published.

Lady Nelthorpe herself I had frequently seen. She had some reputation for talent, was exceedingly affected, wrote poetry in albums, ridiculed her husband, (who was a fox hunter,) and had a particular taste for the fine arts.

There were four or five others of the unknown vulgar, younger brothers, who were good shots and bad matches; elderly ladies, who lived in Bakerstreet, and liked long whist; and young ones, who never took wine, and said "Sir!"

I must, however, among this number, except the beautiful Lady Roseville, the most fascinating woman, perhaps, of the day. She was evidently the great person there, and, indeed, among all people who paid due deference to ton, was always sure to be so everywhere. I have never seen but one person more beautiful. Her eyes were of the deepest blue; her complexion of the most delicate carnation; her hair of the richest auburn : nor could even Mr. Wormwood detect the smallest fault in the rounded yet slender symmetry of her figure.

Although not above twenty-five, she was in that state in which alone a woman ceases to be a dependantwidowhood. Lord Roseville, who had been dead about two years, had not

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