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days, and all my children round me to tise walking with it, was very inconvepartake of it: this may be prejudice nient at first; but use is second nature ; ---no matter-so long as he could af- and so by rehearsing and rehearsing I ford it, my poor father did so before made myself perfect before that ausme; I plead that precedent, and am picious day when Sheriffs flourish and not ashamed of the custom.
geese prevail-namely, the twentyPassing over the minor gradations ninth of September. of my life, the removal from one re The twelve months which followed sidence to another, the enlargement were very delightful, for independentof this warehouse, the rebuilding of ly of the positive honor and éclat they that, the anxiety of a canvass for produced, I had the Mayoralty in common council man, activity in the prospectů (having attained my aldercompany of which I am liveryman, manic gown by an immense majority inquests, and vestries, and ward meets the preceding year), and as I used ings, and all the other pleasing toils during the sessions to sit in my box to which an active citizen is subject, at the Old Bailey, with my bag at my let us come at once to the first marked back and my bouquet on my book, my epoch of my life-the year of my thoughts were wholly devoted to one Sbrievalty. The announcement of object of contemplation : culprits my nomination and election filled stood trembling to hear the verdict of Mrs. S. with delight; and when I a jury, and I regarded them not; took my children to Great Queen convicts knelt to receive the fatal Street, Lincoln's Inn Fields, to look fiat of the recorder, and I heeded not at the gay chariot brushing up for me, their sufferings, as I watched the I confess I felt proud and happy to be Lord Mayor seated in the centre of able to show my progeny the arms of the bench, with the sword of justice London, those of the Spectacle Ma- stuck up in a goblet over his headkers Company, and those of the there, thought I, if I live two years, Scroppses (recently found at a trivial shall I sit—however, even as it was, expense) all figuring upon the same it was very agreeable. When exepannels. They looked magnificent cutions, the chief drawbacks to my upon the pea-green ground, and the delight happened, I found, after a wheels, “white picked out crimson,” little seasoning, I took the thing looked so chaste, and the hammer- coolly, and enjoyed my toast and tea cloth, and the fringe, and the festoons, after the patients were turned off, just and the Scropps' crests all looked so as if nothing had happened ; for, in rich, and the silk linings and white my time, we hanged at eight and tassels, and the squabs and the yellow breakfasted at a quarter after, so that cushions and the crimson carpet look- without much hurry we were able to ed so comfortable, that, as I stood finish our muffins just in time for the contemplating the equipage, I said to cutting down at nine. I had to go to myself, “ What have I done to de- the House of Commons with a petiserve this ?-0 that my poor father tion, and to Court with an addresswere alive to see bis boy Jack going trying situations for one of the down to Westminster, to chop sticks Scroppses-however, the want of and count hobnails, in a carriage like state in parliament, and the very little this !" My children were like mad attention paid to us by the inembers, things : and in the afternoon, when I put me quite at my ease at Westminput on my first new brown court suit ster; while the gracious urbanity of (lined, like my chariot, with white our accomplished Monarch on his silk) and fitted up with cut steel but- throne made me equally comfortable tons, just to try the effect, it all ap- at St. James's. Still I was but a peared like a dream ; the sword, secondary person, or rather only one which I tried on, every night for half of two secondary persons—the chief an hour'after I went up to bed, lo prac. of bailiffs and principal Jack Ketch;
57 ATHENEUM, VOL. 2, 3d series.
there was a step to gain-and, as I nouncing my disembarkation at Westoften mentioned in confidence to Mrs. minster. Thus I tossed and tumbled Scropps, I was sure my heart would until the long wished-for day dawned, never be still until I had reached the and I jumped up anxiously to realize pinnacle.
the visions of the night. I was not Behold at length the time arrived ! long at my toilet-I was soon shaved -Guildhall crowded to excessthe and dressed--but just as I was settling hustings thronged-the aldermen re- myself comfortably into my beautiful tire-they return—their choice is an- brown broadcloth inexpressibles, crack nounced to the people—it has fallen went something, and I discovered that upon John Ebenezer Scropps, Esq. a seam had ripped half a foot long. Alderman and spectacle maker-a Had it been consistent with the digsudden shout is heard—“Scropps for- nity of a Lord Mayor to swear, I ever!" resounds—the whole assembly should, I believe, at that moment, seems to vanish from my sight-I come have anathematized the offending taiforward-am invested with the chain lor ; :-as it was, what was to be done! -I bow—make a speech-tumble – I heard trumpets in earnest, carover the train of the Recorder, and riages drawing up and setting down; tread upon the tenderest toe of Mr. sheriffs, and chaplains, mace bearers, Deputy Pod-leave the hall in ecstasy, train bearers, sword bearers, water baiand drive home to Mrs. Scropps in a liffs, reinembrancers, Mr. Common state of mind bordering upon insanity. Hunt, the town clerk, and the deputy
The days wore on, each one seem- town clerk, all bustling about—the bells ed as long as a week, until at length ringing—and I late, with a hole in the eighth of November arrived, and my inexpressibles ! There was but then did it seem certain that I should one remedy-my wife's maid, kind, be Lord Mayor. I was sworn in—the intelligent creature, civil and obliging, civic insignia were delivered to me and ready to turn her hand to anyI returned them to the proper officers thing, came to my aid, and in less -my chaplain was near me-the es than fifteen minutes her activity, exquires of my household were behind erted in the midst of the confusion, me-the thing was done ; never shall I repaired the injury, and turned me out forget the tingling sensation I felt in fit to be seen by the whole corporation iny ear when I was first called " My of London. Lord”-I even doubted if it were ad When I was dressed, I tapped at dressed to me, and hesitated to an Mrs. Scropps's door, went in, and swer—but it was so—the reign of asked her if she thought I should do. splendor had begun, and, after going the dear soul, after settling my point through the accustomed ceremonies, I lace frill (which she had been good got home and retired to bed early, in enough to pick off her own petticoat order to be fresh for the fatigues of on purpose) and putting my bag the ensuing day
straight, gave me the sweetest salute Sleep I did not-how was it to be imaginable. expected ?—some part of the night I “I wish your Lordship health and was in consultation with Mrs. Scropps happiness," said she. upon the different arrangements ; set Sally,” said I, “ your Ladyship tling about the girls, their places at is an angel ;” and so, having kissed the banquet, and their partners at the each of my daughters, who were in ball; the wind down the chiloney progress of dressing, I descended the sounded like the shouts of the people ; stairs to begin the auspicious day in the cocks crowing in the mews at the which I reached the apex of my back of the house I took for trumpets greatness. Nerer shall I forget the sounding my approach ; and the ordi bows—the civilities—the congratulanary incidental noises in the family I tions-Sheriffs bending before mefancied the popguns at Stangate, an the Recorder smiling—the Common
Serjeant at my feet--the pageant was most innocent of the twelve, came the intoxicating; and when, after having circuit, trembling at the sight of them, breakfasted, I stepped into that glazed and believing them some extraordinaand gilded house upon wheels, called ry creatures upon whom all the hair the state coach, and saw, my sword and fur I saw, grew naturally-I, not bearer pop himself into one of the only to ask these formidable beings to boots, with the sword of state in his dine with me, but, as if I thought it hand, I was lost in ecstasy ; I threw beneath my dignity to do so in my promyself back upon the seat of the ve- per person, deputing a judge of my own hicle with all imaginable dignity, but to do it for me; I never shall forget their not without damage, for in the midst bows in return-Chinese mandarins on of my ease and elegance I snapped a chimney-piece are fools to them. off the cut steel hilt of my sword, Then came the return-we landed by accidentally bumping the whole once more in the scene of my dignity weight of my body right, or rather at the corner of Fleet Street we wrong, directly upon the top of it. found the Lady Mayoress waiting for
But what was a sword hilt or a bruise the procession-there she was—Sally to me? I was the Lord Mayor—the Scropps (her maiden name was Snob) greatest man of the greatest city of —there was my own Sally, with a the greatest nation in the world. The plume of feathers that half filled the people realized my anticipations, and coach, and Jenny and Maria and “ Bravo, Scropps !” and “Scropps young Sally, all with their backs to forever !” again resounded, as we pro- my horses, which were pawing the ceeded slowly and majestically to- mud and snorting and smoking like wards the river, through a fog, which steam engines, with nostrils like prevented our being advantageously safety valves, and four of my footinen seen, and which got down the throat hanging behind the coach, like bees in of the sword bearer, who coughed in
There had not been so cessantly during our progress, much much riband in my family since my to my annoyance, not to speak of the poor father's failure at Coventry-And ungraceful movements which his con- yet how often, over and over again, vulsive barkings gave to the red velvet although he had been dead more than scabbard of the official glave as it twenty years, did I, during that stuck out of the window of the coach. morning, in the midst of my splendor,
We embarked in my barge ; a new think of him, and wish that he could scene of splendor awaited me,-guns, see me in my greatness—Yes, even in shouts, music, flags, banners, in short, the midst of my triumph I seemed to everything that fancy could paint or a defer to my good kind parent-in water bailiff provide. There, in the heaven, as I hope and trust—as if I gilded bark, was prepared a cold col were anxious for his judgment and his lation; I ate, but tasted nothing- opinion as to how I should perform fowls, patés, tongue, game, beef, ham, the arduous and manifold duties of the all had the same flavor; champagne, day. hock, and Madeira, were all alike to Up Ludgate Hill we moved—the me-Lord Mayor was all I saw, all I fog grew thicker and thicker—but then heard, all I swallowed; ererything the beautiful women at the windows, was pervaded by the one captivating those up high could only see my knees word, and the repeated appeal to “my and the paste buckles in my shoes ; Lordship” was sweeter than nectar.
every now and then, I bowed condeAt Westminster, having been pre- scendingly to people I had never sented and received, I desired—I- seen before, in order to show my John Ebenezer Scropps, of Coventry courtesy and my chain and collar, -I desired the Recorder to invite the which I had discovered during the Judges to dine with me-1-who re- morning shone the better for being member when two of the oldest and shaken.
At length we reached Guildhall. - As room; and before I had mittimused I crossed the beautiful building, light- half a dozen paupers for beggary, I ed splendidly, and filled with well was called away to luncheon ; this dressed company, and heard the deaf- barely over, in comes a deputation or ening shouts which rent the fane as I a despatch, and so on till dinner, entered it, I really was overcome which was barely ended before supretired to a private room--refreshed per was announced. We all became my dress, rubbed up my chain, which enchanted with the Mansion House ; the damp had tarnished, and prepared my girls grew graceful by the confito receive my guests. They came, dence their high station gave them; and-shall I ever forget it !--dinner Maria refused a good offer because was announced; the bands played her lover chanced to have an ill "O the roast beef of old England.” sounding name ; we had all got setOnwards we went,-a Prince of the tled in our rooms, the establishment blood, of the blood royal of my coun- had begun to know and appreciate us ; try, led out my Sally—my own Sally we had just become in fact easy in --the Lady
Mayoress! the Lord our dignity and happy in our position, High Chancellor handed out young when, lo and behold! the ninth of Sally-I saw it done-I thought I November came again—the annivershould have choked; the Prime Mi- sary of my exaltation, the consummanister took Maria ; the Lord Privy tion of my downfall. Seal gave his arm to Jenny; and Again did we go in state to Guildmy wife's mother, Mrs. Snob, was hall, again were we toasted and adhonored by the protection of the dressed, again were we handed in and Right Honorable the Lord Chief Jus- led out, again flirted with cabinet tice of the King's Bench.-Oh, if my ministers and danced with ambassapoor father could but have seen that! dors, and at two o'clock in the morn
It would be tiresome to dwelling drove home from the scene of upon the pleasures of the happy year, gaiety to our old residence in Budge thus auspiciously begun, in detail; Row.--Never in this world did pickeach month brought its delights, each led herrings and turpentine smell so week its festival; public meetings powerfully as on that night when we under the sanction of the Right Hon- entered the house ; and although my orable the Lord Mayor; concerts and wise and the young ones stuck to the balls under the patronage of the Lady drinkables at Guildhall, their natural Mayoress; Easter and its dinner, feelings would have way, and a sort Blue-coat boys and buns ; processions of shuddering disgust seemed to fill here, excursions there. Summer their minds on their return home,-the came, and then we had swan-hopping passage looked so narrow-the drawup the river, and white-baiting down ingrooms looked so small-the stairthe river; Yantlet Creek below, the case seemed so dark-our apartments navigation barge above ; music, flags, appeared 80 low,-however, being streamers, guns, and company ; turtle tired, we all slept well, at least I did, every day in the week; peas at a for I was in no humor to talk to Sally, pound a pint, and grapes at a guinea and the only topic I could think upon a pound; dabbling in rosewater served before I dropped into my slumber, vas in gold, not to speak of the loving a calculation of the amount of expense cup, with Mr. Common Hunt, in full which I had incurred during the just dress, at my elbow. My dinners were expired year of my greatness. talked of, Ude grew jealous, and I In the morning we assembled at was idolized.
breakfast, -a note lay on the table, The days, which before seemed addressed, “ Mrs. Scropps, Budge like weeks, were now turned to mi- Row.” The girls, one after the nutes : scarcely had I swallowed my other, took it up, read the superscripbreakfast before I was in my justice tion, and laid it down again. A visit
er was announced a neighbor and ed entirely to have forgotten her. By kind friend, a man of wealth and im- apd by, when we were going out in a portance--what were his first words ? fly to take the air, one of the waiters they were the first I had heard from desired the fly man to pull off, because a stranger since my job, -"How are Sir Sounething Somebody's carriage you, Scropps, done up, eh ?”
could not come up,-it was clear that Scropps ! no obsequiousness, no the name of Scropps had lost its indeference, no respect; “ my fluence. lord, I hope your lordship passed an We secluded ourselves in a private agreeable night—and how is her lady- house, where we did nothing but sigh ship and your lordship’s amiable and look at the sea. We had been daughters?”-not a bit of it How's totally spoiled for our proper sphere, Mrs. S. and the gals ?” This was
and could not get into a better; the quite natural, all as it had been, all indifference of our inferiors mortified perhaps as it should bebut how un us, and the familiarity of our equals like what it was, only one day before ! disgusted us,-our potentiality was The very servants, who, when amidst gone, and we were so much degraded the strapping, stall-fed, gold-laced that a puppy of a fellow had the imlacqueys of the Mansion House, pertinence to ask Jenny if she was (transferred with the chairs and going to one of the Old Ship balls. tables from one Lord Mayor to “Of course,” said the coxcomb, “I another) dared not speak, nor look, don't mean the · Almacks, for they nor say their lives were their own, are uncommonly select.” strutted about the house, and bang In short, do what we would, ed the doors, and talked of their where we might, we were outraged “ Missis," as if she had been an and annoyed, or at least thought ourapple woman.
selves so; and beyond all bitterness So much for domestic aniseries ;-I was the reflection, that the days of went out was shoved about in our dignity and delight never might Cheapside in a most remorseless man return. There were at Brighton no ner; my right eye had a narrow less than three men who called me escape of being poked out by the tray Jack, and that, out of flies or in liof a brawny butcber's boy, who, when braries ; and one of these, chose occaI civilly remonstrated, turned round sionally, by way of inaking himself and said, “Vy, I says, who are you I particularly agreeable, to address me vonder, as is so partiklar about your by the fainiliar appellation of Jacky. hysight.” I felt an involuntary shud. At length, and that only three weeks der,-to-day, thought I, I am John after my fall, an overgrown tallow Ebenezer Scropps-two days ago I chandler metus on the Steyne, and was Lord Mayor ; and so the rencontre stopped our party to observe, “as ended, evidently to the advantage of how he thought he owed me for two the bristly brute. It was however barrels of coal tar, for doing over his too much for me—the effect of con- pigstyes." This settled it,-we detrast was too powerful, the change parted from Brighton, and made a tour was too sudden-and I determined to of the coast ; but we never rallied ; go to Brighton for a few weeks to re- and business, which must be minded, fresh myself, and be weaned from my drove us before Christmas to Budge dignity.
Row, where we are again settled We went-we drove to the Royal down. Hotel ; in the hall stood one of his Maria has grown thin-Sarah has Majesty's ministers, one of my former turned methodist-and Jenny, who guests, speaking to his lady and danced with his Excellency the daughter : my girls passed close to Portuguese Ambassador, who him,-he had handed one of them to called angelic by the Right Honoradinner the year before, but he appear- ble the Lord Privy Seal, and who