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will supply their places, and, in some ry ornamented with flowers they seem respects, contrast well with the sea to be more enjoyed, so their union son. Many fail in preserving the there is irresistibly attracting. To beauty of plants in their apartments, enjoy reading under such circumbecause they do not give them suffi- stances, most, works of imagination cient light. Some species do well are preferable to abstract subjects. with much less light than others. Poetry and romance—“De Vere” and Light is as necessary to them as air. « Pelham”-lighter history—the liveThey should not be too often shifted ly letters of the French school, like from one place to another. Those those of Sevigné and others-or natuwho will take the trouble, may quick- ral history—these are best adapted to en the growth of some plants, so as to peruse amidst sweets and flowers : in have spring flowers in winter. Thus short, any species of writing that does Autumn and Spring might be connect- not keep the mind too intently fixed ed; and flowers blooming in the Win- to allow the senses to wander occater of our gloomy climate possess dou- sionally over the scene around, and ble attraction.
catch the beauty of the rich vegetaThe presence of flowers is a source tion. To me the enjoyment derived of beauty to the mind; for the mean- from the union of books and lowers est of them is lovely. To any of the is of the very highest value among Floral world, the terms, disproportion pleasurable sensations. and ugliness, are inapplicable. Un For my own part, I manage very bounded in variety, they are all charm- well without the advantage of a greening to the sight, their race is essen- house. The evergreens serve me in tially beautiful. It is embued with winter. Then the Lilacs come in, the elements of perfect gracefulness. followed by the Guelder Rose and One flower may appear preserable to Woodbine, the latter trained in a pot another in color, size, and shape, but upon circular trellis-work. After this in the humblest there is the stamp of there can be no difficulty in choosing, elegance. They are all pleasing, all as the open air offers every variety. attractive. Those who are distin- I arrange all my library and parlorguished by a fondness for them and plants in a room in my dwelling-house their cultivation, are persons of ele- facing the south, having a full portion gant minds. To the fair sex, in par- of light, and a fire-place. I promote ticular, they offer a charming study, the growth of my flowers for the early and the decoration of their rooms with part of the year by steam-warmth, and every fresh succession sets off their having large tubs and boxes of earth, own attractions; while the attending I am at no loss, in my humble conthem harmonizes well with our ideas servatory, for flowers of many kinds of female occupation. A lovely girl when our climate offers none. The in a flower-garden is a far preferable trouble attending them is all my own, object to the eye, to one in a ball- and is one of those employments which
In the midst of the luxuries never appear laborious. Those who of a rich vegetation, the female figure have better conveniences may proceed is set off better; and the colors of the on a larger scale; but I contrive to parterre make out what the painters keep up a due succession, which to a call a fore and back-ground, that ad- floral epicure is everything. To be a ministers admirably to the exhibition day in the year without seeing a flowof the “ fairest flower” of all. How er is a novelty to me, and I am perdesirable is it that fashion should be suaded much more might be done with kept on the route of true taste, and my humble means than I have effectmade to go hand in hand with the ed, had I sufficient leisure to attend simple and natural!
to the retarding or forcing them. I In the flower-garden alcove, books cover every space in my sitting-rooms are doubly grateful. As in the libra- with these beautiful fairy things of
creation, and take so much delight in there are persons to whom the flowers the sight of them, that I cannot help of Paradise would be objects of indifrecommending to those of limited in- ference : but who can imitate, or envy comes, like myself, to follow my ex- such ? They are grovellers, whose ample and be their own nurserymen. coarseness of taste is only fitted for The rich might easily obtain them the grossest food of life. The pleawithout; but what they procure by sures of flowers and of books are, as gold, the individual of small means Henry IV. observed of his child, “the must obtain by industry. I know property of all the world.”
“ Gentle Breeze, that giv'st my brow
Azure gleam that deeply lies In the fair wood-spirit's eyes, And the fount's melodious cooing, While the waves their gems are strewing. Hast thou not been far and near Gathering featly for my cheer, All of precious sound and smell, Culled from garden, steep, and dell?" " Not from sea or stars I roam ; Not with fairies is my home; "Tis a thousand years since I Sported in the Indian sky; And but seldom have I trod In the bower of Nymph or God, Since, to punish sins of men, Heaven hath fled from human ken. I around the green earth sweep, Dappled land and rolling deep; Still on mortal steps attending, And with sighs of mortals blending. 'Twas in ages far away That I heard the Muses play ; And from starry Memnon's string Melodies no longer ring. In some realm of shade aloft Juno sits, lamenting oft ; Her tiar of blossoms now Scentless withers on her brow. Feet of ancient kings and Gods, Print no more these lowly sods ; And the common dust hath troubled Founts that once with nectar bubbled.
Now no more I greet thy sense
Tell me, tell me, gentle wind, Where such freshness thou couldst find, Such as makes my bosom own In each pulse a tuneful tone. Whence thou comest, thither I, With a speed like thine, will fly, Those delicious airs to breathe, Known not else the stars beneath." “ Morn was on the ocean grey With a bright and various ray, When I wakened in an island, Lone, and green, and calm, and silent, From a violet-bank I flew, Moist with yet unshaken dew; Where nor butterfly, nor bird, E'en one little leaf had stirred. Over rippling waves I sprang, And around my path they sang ; And the nautilus uplifted His thin sail, and blithely drifted. And the halcyon oped its wings, Bright with jewelled spots and rings, Starred and zoned with gold and blue, Sunny thing of glorious hue. And the ocean's fearless daughter, Winged pilgrim of the water, Bird that loves to haunt the storm, Round me wheeled its silvered form. And the stately vessel glided O'er the billows it derided, Till amid the ropes I playedAnd, methought, the pilot prayed. But I sought the quiet shore, And beheld the main no more; And I shook each ancient tree Where the doves rejoice in me. Swift I rushed o'er hills and meads, Like a troop of Tartar steeds ; And the clouds I drove before me Flung their changeful shadows o'er me. Battling lines were ranged below, Big with hate and prompt for woe; And the peal that fiercely broke, Filled my nostrils with its smoke. Fast I fed, and reached a plain, Broidered rich with fruits and grain, Steadfast towers and waving leas, Such as loves a summer-breeze. Thence I wandered to a vale, Precious kernel of my tale, Green and warm, with hills around, Robed in leaves, and rocky-crowned. Seemed it all of sunshine born, Nurtured on the light of morn, Every knoll a heap of posies, Every nook a nest of roses. Through a hedge of flowery twine, Sweet-briar, orange, jasmine, vine ; Whispering and lithe I crept E'en to where a lady slept.
Scarce her cheek's carnation charm
" Now, I know, 'tis she, 'tis she,
Wretched thing, what hateful spell
CHARACTERS OF CONTEMPORARY FOREIGN AUTHORS AND
No. II.—Mons. Jacques LAFFITTE, MEMBER OF THE French CHAMBER OF DEPUTIES. JACQUES LAFFITTE was born at Bay the death of M. Perregaux, head of onne, of poor and obscure parentage. that concern, which he has raised to His father was a master-carpenter, such a high degree of prosperity, and who supported with difficulty a very the capital of which, in specie and numerous family by his industry. His effects, amounts to twenty millions of second son, Jacques, distinguished French livres. himself at an early age, by a quick The political career of M. Laffitte ness of parts very uncommon at those began in 1814; he then enlarged the years. At the age of fifteen he was sphere of his action, and, not boundplaced with a banker at Bayonne, of ing his ideas within the limits of a the name of Formlaques, and there justly-merited reputation, he obtained speedily made himself conspicuous by the still more valuable estimation of his application, and promptness in being an intrepid citizen, and a man comprehending all the niceties of com- entirely devoted to the interests of mercial transactions. M. Formlaques his country. Twice, and at two difconceived a friendship for him, and in ferent periods of time, he has saved a very short time young Laffitte was a the treasures of the bank of France. complete adept in the line of business The Emperor Napoleon, on the first which he embraced. Already, by the approaches of his reverses, endeavored fruit of his industry, he supported his to convert the resources of the bank entire family, when his youthful am- to his own account. But the statutes bition suggesting to him to appear on of that establishment were found to a more extensive theatre than that of be in opposition to the wishes of the a small provincial town, he repaired Emperor, according to their strict into Paris at the dawn of the revolution. terpretation. The council was assemBeing provided with a letter of recom- bled; the order of the Emperor was mendation, as the only ground of his read, and the whole meeting looked fortune, from M. Formlaques, to the at each other with symptoms of terror banker Perregaux, he presented him- and trembling, when M. Laffitte, who self before him, and was admitted into was the governor of the bank, arose, the house as clerk. The old banker and with a voice of firmness and enerwas struck with his simple but intelli- gy, refused his assent to a measure gent countenance, and his modest and that was contradictory to the regularespectful behavior, and treated him tions of the bank, and must, ultimatewith every degree of kindness. With ly, be destructive to its credit. But the assistance of this new auxiliary, his colleagues were still hesitating, the business of the establishment re when he vividly reproached them for ceived a rapid augmentation and im- a weakness that was likely to cover provement, which was to be attributed them with infamy in the eyes of the to his ability, vigilance and persever- commercial world, and feeling the ance; and in the course of time the power of his remonstrances, and the son of the poor carpenter of Bayonne dictates of their own consciences, they became partner, and afterwards, at joined him in his vote.
On the second occasion, a stilled his property to those who had rugreater danger menaced him from a ined him by their flatteries, but bedifferent quarter. He was governor stowed not a single mark of kindness of the bank in 1814, when the greatest or gratitude on the man who had asanarchy prevailed at Paris, and the sisted him in his distress. allied armies entered it with all the In the Chamber of Deputies, M. power in their own hands. A messen- Laffitte rarely mounts the tribune ; ger froin General Blucher repaired to but when there he speaks only of that M. Laffitte's house in the evening, which he thoroughly understands. charging him, in the name of his su- Though his physical powers are feeperior, to surrender to him the keys ble, and his voice weak, he continues of the treasury of the bank. Prompt to make himself well understood, beobedience was insisted on, or else an cause he knows well how to secure a immediate conveyance to the fortress hearing. His first speech on the quesof Spandau. The officer threatened tion of the Budget, delivered in 1915, to put the order in force at that very introduced a new era into France. It instant, but M. Laffitte refused to was the first time that any member comply, and only requested to be per- ventured, in the tribune, to contradict mitted to remain with his family till the statements of the ministers; but the following morning. The request this style of speaking soon came into was granted, and M. Laffitte, profiting vogue, and the merit of its original by the few moments allowed to him, invention is justly to be ascribed to despatched an express to the Empe- M. Laffitte. In all his speeches on ror Alexander, begging him for a safe- subjects of finance, this member is guard and protection. The aid-de- very parsimonious of two things, of camp of Blucher passed the night in which the other orators are very lavish, the apartments of the banker, but on that is, figures of arithmetic, and fig. the following morning the express re- ures of speech : he reasons rather than turned with a favorable and satisfac- calculates, and, like M. De Labourtory answer.
donnaye, and, before him, the eloWhen the landing of Napoleon on quent General Foy, he never goes into the shores of Provence was announced mere declamation. His diction is not at the Tuileries, the royal government always elegant, but it is neat; and his felt reluctant to apply to a banker that speeches are occasionally diffuse, but had exhibited so many striking proofs never violent. He uses but little gesof patriotism; nevertheless it was to ture, and his preambles, as well as his him that the party addressed them- action, are simple and natural. He selves, in the hour of distress, to trans- delivers, occasionally, unpremeditated mit to England the disposable sums sentiments, and very successfully, on that were at hand on the approach of unforeseen subjects; his written and Napoleon. M. Laffitte did not hesi- spoken language partake of the same tate to comply, and take charge of character, which, considered with rethat very delicate commission, forget- ference to the three excellent speechful of the rebutis that he had previ- es which he lately delivered, no longously experienced ; and handed to the er allows us to believe, (as is groundfalling monarch a letter of credit on lessly asserted,) that he borrowed the England, before he received the neces- pen of his friend Manuel. Whether sary securities himself,
the fabric of his mind, or his physical Napoleon again falis ; and it is M. organization, be the cause that long Laffitte that is destined to become the periods and theatrical bursts of elodepository of his fortune. But what quence do not belong to him, or whewas his recompense ! nothing but ther he re misi rustful of his own faci. slanders and insults on the part of the lity, he makes frequent pauses between roval government; and what is more, his sentences; so that his style of Napoleon, on his death-bed, bequeath-speaking is not at all of a piece, and