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I understand the meaning now of the property. Sure I should stay for ever, Persian salutation—" May your sha- and doubted whether I ought not to dow never be less !" I lost mine en- secure it at once for ten years instead tirely in about a fortnight that I staid of one. And, before I had been settled at Lady Skinfint's.
in the house three quarters of an hour, I Two more hosts took me “ at live- found that the chimneys—every one of ry" (besides the “ widow" of the “ offi- them! smoked from the top to bottom! cer of rank")—an apothecary who There was guilt, Mr. North, in the made patients of his boarders, and an landlord's eye, the moment the first attorney, who looked for clients among puff drove me out of my drawing-room. them. I got away from the medical He made an effort to say something gentleman rather hastily, for I found like “ damp day;" but the “ amen” that the pastry-cook who served the stuck in his throat. He could not say house was his brother; and the lawyer “amen," Mr. Editor, when I did cry was so pressing about « discounts,” “God bless us !" The whole buildand “investments of property,” that I ing, from the kitchen to the garret, never ventured to sign my name, even was infected with the malady. I had to a washing-bill, during the few days noticed the dark complexions of the I was in his house: On quitting the family, and had concluded they were which, I took courage, and resolved to from the West-Indies,--they were become my own provider, and hired a smoke-dried !“First Floor,” accordingly (“unfur
Blow high, blow low! nished") in the neighbourhood of I suffered six weeks under excuses, Bloomsbury Square.
knowing them to be humbug all the * Mutatis loci, non ingenii."
while. For a whole month it was “the The premier coup of my new career wind;" but I saw the wind” twice amounted to an escape. I ordered a all round the compass, and found, blow carte blanche outfit from an upholsterer which way it would, it still blew down of Piccadilly, determined to have my my chimney.
apartments” unexceptionable before Then we came to “ Cures." First, I entered them; and discovered, after a there were alterations at the top-new hundred pounds laid out in painting, chimney-pots—cowls, hovels,—and all decorating, and curtain fitting, that the making the thing worse. “ ground landlord” had certain clainis tried at the bottom-grates reset, and which would be liquidated when my fues contracted-still to no purpose. property “ went in.
Then we came to burning charcoal ; This miscarriage made me so cau- and in four days I was in a decline. tious, that, before I could choose again, Then we kept the doors and windows I was the sworn horror of every auc- open ; and in one day I got a fit of the tioneer and house-agent (so called) in rheumatism. And in spite of doors or London. I refused twenty offers, at windows, blowers, registers, or Count least, because they had the appearance Rumford-precaution in putting on of being á great bargains.” Eschewed coals, or mathematical management of all houses, as though they had the poker-down the enemy would come plague, in which I found that “ single to our very faces,-poof! poof -as if gentlemen were preferred." Was in derision! till I prayed Heaven that threatened with three actions of defa- smoke had life and being, that I might mation for questioning the solvency of commit murder on it at once, and so persons in business. And, at length, be hanged ; and, at length, after throwwas so lucky as to hit upon a really ing every moveable I could command desirable mansion ! The “ family at the grate and the chimney by turns, perfectly respectable ; but had more and paying "no cure no pay" doctors room” than was necessary to them. by dozens, who did nothing but make Demanded the “strictest references," dirt and mischief, I sent for a respectaand accepted no inmate for « less than ble surveyor, paid him for his opinion a year.” Into this most unexceptiona- beforehand, and heard that the fault in ble abode I conveyed myself and my the chimneys was "radical," and not
to be remedied without pulling the house does either party gain by the change? down!
“We know," the wise man has said, I paid my twelvemonth's rent and what we are ; but we know not what wished only that my landlord might we may be.” live through his lease. I heard after
In estimating the happiness of housewards, that he had himself been im- holders, I had imagined all tenants to posed upon; and that the house, from be like myself-mild, forbearing, puncthe first fire ever lighted in it, had been tual, and contented; but I “kept a scandal to the neighbourhood. But house” three years, and was never out this whole Magazine would not suffice of hot water the whole time! I did to enumerate the variety of wretched- manage, after some trouble, to get fairnesses—and smoky chimneys the very ly into a creditable mansion—just missleast of them !—which drove me a se ing one, by a stroke of fortune, which cond time to change my plan of life; had a brazier's shop at the back of it, the number of lodgings that I lived in; and was always shown at hours when and the inconveniences, greater or less- the workmen were gone to dinner er, attending each. In one place, my and sent a notice to the papers, that a servants quarrelled with the servants bachelor of sober habits having “ a larof “ the people of the house.” In ano- ger residence than he wanted,” would ther, " the people of the house's” ser- dispose of half it to a family of respecvants quarrelled with mine. Here, my tability. But the whole world seemed housekeeper refused to stay, because to be, and I think is, in a plot to drive “ the kitchen was damp," There, my me out of my senses. In the first ten footman begged I would“ provide my- days of my new dignity, I was visited self,” as there were “ rats in his cock. by about twenty tax-gatherers, half of loft.” Then somebody fell over a pail them with claims that I had never of water, left upon my stairs ;” and heard of, and the other half with claims “ my maid” declared, it was the exceeding my expectations. The houseother maid had put it there.” Then holder seemed to be the minister's the cats fought ; and I was assured, very milch cow—the positive scapethat mine had given the first scratch. goat of the whole community! I was On the whole, the disputes were so called on for house-tax, window-tax, manifold, and always ending in my dis- land-tax, and servant's-tax! Poor's. comfiture,- for the lady of the mansion rate, sewer's-rate, pavement-rate, and would assail me,-I never could get scavenger’s-rate! I had to pay for wathe gentleman to be dissatisfied, (and so tering streets on which other people conclude the controversy by kicking walked—for lighting lamps which other him down stairs,—that, seeing one people saw by- for maintaining watchclear advantage maintained by the men who slept all night—and for build grand-possessor, viz. that I, when we ing churches that I never went into. squabbled, was obliged to vacate, and And—I never knew that the country he remained where he was, I resolved, was taxed till that moment !- there once for all, to turn the tables upon were but a few of the “ dues” to be mankind at large, and become a “ land- sheared off from me. There was the lord," and a “housekeeper," in my clergyman of the parish, whom I never own immediate person.
saw, sent to me at Easter for an of“ Sir, the grey goose hath laid an fering.” There was the charity-school egg. Sir, the old barn doth need re- of the parish, solicited “the honour" of pair. The cook sweareth, the meat my subscription and support.” One doth burn at the fire. John Thomas scoundrel came and told me that I was is in the stocks ; and everything “ drawn for the militia ;” and offered to stays on your arrival.”
“ get me off," on payment of a sum of I would not advise any single gen- money. Another rascal insisted that I tleman hastily to conclude that he is was chosen constable ;" and actually in distress. Bachelors are discontent- brought the insignia of office to my ed, and take wives ; footmen are am- door. Then I had petitions to read, (in bitious, and take eating-houses. What writing) from all the people who chose
to be in distress - personal beggars, which was nothing but faults, never who penetrated into my parlour, to send had half so many faults as my house. to Bridewell, or otherwise get rid of. Carlton Palace, if it were to be “ let” Windows were broken, and no- to-morrow, would be objected to by a body" had “done it." The key of tailor. One man found my rooms too the street-door was lost, and nobody" small;" another thought them rather had “ had it.” Then my cook stop- “ too large;" a third wished that they ped up the kitchen sink; and the had been loftier; “ a fourth, that there bricklayers took a month to open it. had been more of them.” One lady Then my gutter ran over, and flooded hinted a sort of doubt, “ whether the my neighbor's garret; and I was served neighbourhood was quite respectable ;"> with notice of an action for dilapidation. another asked, "if I had any children;"
And, at Christmas !-Oh! it was and, then, “ whether I would bind myno longer dealing with ones and twos! self not to have any during her stay !"
- The whole hundred, on the day after Two hundred, after detaining me an that festival, rose up, by concert, to de- hour, had called only “for friends.” your me!
Ten thousand went through all the Dustmen, street-keepers, lamplight- particulars, and would
6 call again ers, torncocks-postmen, beadles, sca to-morrow."
At last there came a lavengers, chimney-sweeps- the whole dy who gave the coup-de-grace to my pecus of parochial servitorship was at “house-keeping;” she was a clergymy gate before eleven at noon.
man's widow, she said, from SomerThen the 6 waits" came—two sets ! setshire-if she had been an -and fought which should have my cer's," I had suspected her ; but, in an bounty.” Rival patroles disputed whe- evil hour, I let her in; and—she had ther I did or did not lie within their come for the express purpose of marry“beat." At one time there was a ing me! The reader who has bowels, doubt as to which, of two parishes, I they will yearn for my situation. belonged to; and I fully expected that
Nolo conjugari !* (to make sure) I should have been vi- I exclaimed in agony; but what could sited by the collectors from both ! Meantime the knocker groaned, until she seduced me-escape was hopeless
serve against the ingenuity of woman? very evening, under the dull, stunning, -morning, noon, and night! She single thumps, each villain would have heard a mouse behind the wainscot, and struck, although it had been upon
I called in to scare it. Her canary head of his own grandfather !-of ba- bird got loose—would I be so good as kers, butchers, tallow-chandlers, gro- to catch it? I fell sick, but was soon cers, fishmongers, poulterers, and oilmen! Every ruffian who made his glad to get well again; for she sent
times a-day to ask if I was better; livelihood by swindling me through the besides pouring in plates of blanc whole year, thought himself entitled to a peculiar benefaction (for his robbe mange, jellies, cordials, raspberry vine
gars, fruits fresh from the country, and ries) on this day. And
hasty-puddings made by her own hand. * Host! Now by my life I scorn the name !"
And, at last, after I had resisted all the All this was child's play-bagatelle, constant borrowing of books, the eterI protest, and perfumed,” to what I nal interchange of newspapers, and had to go through in the “ letting off the daily repair of crow-quills, the opinof my dwelling! The swarm of cro ions upon wine, the corrections of hackcodiles that assail me, on every fine
ney coachmen, and the recommendation day-three fourths of them, to avoid an of a barber to the poodle dog ;-at impending shower, or to pass away a last-Oh! the devil take all wrinkled stupid morning—in the shape of stale stair carpets, stray pattens, and bits of dowagers, city coxcombs, “profession, orange-peel dropped upon the ground! al gentlemen,” and “ single ladies !” Mrs.F-sprained her ankle, and fell And all (except a few that were swin- down at my very drawing-room door ! dlers) finding something wrong about my arrangements ! Gil Blas mule,
Was this Latin or lorkshire ? --C. N.
Animus meminisse horret.
All the women in the house were did this, in order that I may know bribed-there was not one of them in when he is hanged-a fact I wish the way! My footman, my only safe, particularly to ascertain, because his guard—was sent off that minute for a father and I had an altercation about it. doctor!-I was not married; for so Experience, however, gives lights; much, let Providence be praised ! and a “furnished lodging” is the best
arrangement among the bad. I had I can't go through the affair! But, seven transitions last month, but that about six
months after, I presented Mrs. was owing to accidents; a man who — with my house, and every thing chooses well may commonly stay a in it, and determined never again--as a fortnight in a place. Indeed, as I man's only protection against female said in the beginning, I have been ten cupidity-to possess even a pair of days where I am; and I don't, up to small-clothes that I could legally call this moment, see clearly what point my own.
shall go away upon.
The mistress Ultimum Supplicium.
of the house entertains a pet monkey This resolution, Mr. Editor, compel- — failing all issue of her own; and I led me to shelter myself in “ furnished have got a new footman, who, I underlodgings,” where the most of accom- stand, plays upon the fiddle. The matmodation, (sublunary!) after all, I be- ter,I suspect, will lie between these two. lieve, is to be found. I had sad work, I am most nervous myself about the as you may imagine, to find my way monkey. He broke loose the other at first. Once I ventured to inhabit day. I saw him escape over the next (as there was no board in the case) garden wall, and drop down by the side with a surgeon. But, what between of a middle-aged gentleman, who was the patients and the resurrection-men, setting polyanthuses ! The respectable the night bell” was intolerable; and man, as was prudent, took refuge in a he ordered the watchman too, I found, summer-house; and then he pulled to pull it privately six or seven times a- up all the polyanthuses; and then tried week, in order to impress the neighbour- to get in at the summer-house window ! hood with an opinion of his practice. I think thatFrom one place, I was driven away by Eh!- Why, what the deuce is all a music-master, who gave concerts op- this ?-Why, the room is full of smoke! posite to me; and, at a second, after – Why, what the devil—Thomas !two days abiding, I found that a mad- [I ring the bell violently.]- Thomas ! man was confined on the second floor! -[I call my new footman.]— Tho-o-oTwo houses I left, because my hostess- mas !—Why, some rascal has set the es made love to me. Three, because house on fire. parrots were kept in the streets. One,
Enter THOMAS. because a cock (who would crow all Indeed, no, your honour-indeed night) came to live in a yard at the no-it—it's only the chimney. back of me; and another, in which I The chimney! you dog -get ahad staid two months (and should per- way this moment and put it out. Stay! haps have remained till now) because – Thomas !—The villain's gone !a boy of eight years old—there is to come back,I say,—what chimney is it? me no earthly creature so utterly intol Thomas. Only the kitchen chimney,sir. erable as a boy of eight years old ! Only the kitchen chimney! you rascame home from school to pass “ the cal, how did you do it? holidays.” I had thoughts—I don't Thomas. I was only tuning my fidcare who knows it-of taking him off dle, you honour; and Mary, house. by poison ; and bought two raspberry maid, flung the rosin into the fire. tarts to give him arsenic in, as I met His fiddle ! - Mr. North, I knew it him on the stairs, where he was, up would happen. Where's the landlord? and down, all day. As it is, I have Thomas. He's not at home, sir. sent an order to Seven Dials, to have Where's his wife? an early delivery” of all the “Dying Thomas. She's in fits, sir. Speeches” for the next ten years. I You scoundrel, you'll be hanged, to
a certainty !—There's a statute for you, No back-door! caitiff! there is. Come, sir-come [Enter the Cook, with the monkey on strip, and go up the chimney directly. her back. The knocking continues. -Strip! or I'll kill you with the toast Cook. Oh laws, sir! We shall all ing fork, and bury your body in the be destructed, sir !—Oh laws! where is dust-hole.
your honour's double-barrelled gun? [Enter the cat, with a tail as thick as My gun ?-up stairs. What d'ye
my arm, galloping round the room.] want with the gun?
Zounds and death, what's to be Cook. Oh laws, sir! if it was to be done?-My life's not insured !-I must shot off up the chimney, it would surely get out of the house. [Rattling of put it out. wheels, and cries of “ Fire !” in the She's right. Run, Thomas! At the street.} Oh, the devil! here comes head of the bed. Away with you. the parish engine, and with as many Mind—it's loaded-take care what you thieves with it as might serve six par- are about. ishes -Shut the doors below, I say. There they go !- They have found (Calling down stairs.] Don't let 'em it. Now they are down stairs. Why, in. Thomas !The house will be gut- zounds! the woman has got the gun
! ted from top to bottom !— Thomas ! - - Take it from her!-He don't hear Where is that rascally servant of mine! me. Thomas -She's going to fire it, Thomas !--[Calling in all directions.] as I live !-- Yes! she's sitting down in 1-1 must see, myself.
the grate !—Thomas ! — With her body [Scene changes to the kitchen. The half way up the chimney!—Thomas!
housemaid in hysterics under the Death ! the woman's a fool. Bang ! dresser.]
bang! [Report heard!] Ah! there Phooh! what a smell of sulphur! she goes backwards ! — It's all up! - Thomas !-Do your chimneys ever Here comes the soot, in cart-loads, take fire in Scotland, Mr. Editor ?-- all over her !— Thomas ! you rascal ! Thomas !-I remember it was on a --She's killed !—No, egad! she's up, Friday I hired him !- Thomas !--[I and running. Don't let her come near find him in the jack-towel.]— Take a me. Margery! Pshaw! What's her wet blanket, you rascal,and get thro’ the name ?-She's running towards the garret window. Crawl up the tiles you the street door !-Margery!-Why, wretch, and muffle the chimney-pot! she's all on fire, and as black as a soot
Madam ! [The landlady clings bag !_Why, stop her, I say.—Ab! round my neck.)-Madam-for Hea- she gets into the street. Thomas !ven's sake!—There is no danger, I as- Margery!- Everybody! The woman sure you.—[She clings tighter.]–Or, will be burned to death! [Shouts if there is, we had better embrace af- without, and noise of water. "Ha!ter it's over.—You'll “ die by me?” [I run to the window.]–Huzza ! - No, nonot for the world. Throw The engines are playing upon
her !!! some pails of water on the grate, for That infernal footman! he is my Heaven's sake!-Damn the monkey! fate--and I thought it would be the how he gets between one's legs! Thom- monkey! mas ! [The tumult increases.] Thomas!
Enter Thomas. Thomas. [Down the chimney.) Sir! Come in, you sneaking scoundrel.
One more peep [I run up stairs] Is the woman burnt ? from the window. Hark, how they Thomas. No, sir,-she's only singed. knock without !-Rat-tat-tat-tat! As I Singed! you Beelzebub's bastard !-live, here are a dozen engines, fifty fire- Curse the monkey-stop him-he's men, and four thousand fools !- I must gone off with my gold spectacles ! be off !- Thomas !--[He enters] Mr. North, if you have compassion, I must escape. Thomas ! I'll sepul- hear a man of five-and-forty's prayer ! chre you—but not yet. Show me the I can't stay here !—where am I to go back-door.
to ?-If you should think— Thomas ! Thomas. There is none, sir. I've -I must get into a hackney coach !. been trying to get out myself.
If you should thinkCall me a hackATHENEUM VOL. 1. new series.