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"We dwelt in this castle seven years
Of good life-how difficult from memory its description !
Then came years barren and burnt up:
When one evil year had passed away, there came another to succeed it;
They died; and neither foot nor hoof remained."
The allusions here have a specific reference to an event in scripture history, and fix the date of the poem to a given point in the patriarchal times. It is neither more nor less than an abridgment of the relation in Genesis, and the words printed in italics are used by Moses, and that in one instance only"Our cattle also shall go with us: there shall not an hoof be left behind."
A very singular confirmation of this reference is adduced by Mr. Forster, from Firazabaudi, after Ebn Hesham, who relates that a flood of rain laid bare to view a sepulchre in Yemen, on which lay a woman having on her neck seven collars of pearls, and on her hands and her feet bracelets, and ankle-rings, and armlets, seven on each; and on every finger a ring, in which was set a jewel of great price; and at her head a coffer, filled with treasure, and a tablet with this inscription: :
"In thy name, O God, the God of Hamyar,
I, Tajah, the daughter of Dzu Shefar, sent my steward to Joseph;
From my ornaments, may she die by no other than my death."
This is a truly sad tale, told in a few lines-and it has its moral.
In passing from the inscriptions of the Adites, the most renowned of the ancient Arab tribes, to the Hamyaritic inscription over the entrance of the ruins at Nakabu-l-Hagar, we drop at once an interval of nearly eighteen centuries, from the days of the Pharaohs to those of the Cæsars. It contains the names of King Åb Mohareb, celebrated by Mohammedan writers, of Behenna his wife, and of Dzu Nowas their son, and the last of the Homerite kings, who perished about seventy years before Mohammed, in battle with the Abyssinians-and the inscription at Aden appears to refer to this event.
But these naines of exclusive Arab celebrity are all thrown into the shade by the classic name of Charibael, also occurring in the inscription, and having reference to that king of the Homerites and Sabaans who is celebrated by Arrian, and whose alliance, in the reign of Claudius, was assiduously courted by the Romans.
It cannot but be a source of national congratulation that the mysterious monuments of Arabian antiquity belonging to the age of Jacob and Joseph, nearly three centuries prior to the Book of Moses, or 3500 years ago, and the first alphabet of mankind, have been thus unveiled;-the finding the duplicate copy of the Rosetta and Phila inscription,* by which the Egyptian hieroglyphs can be compared with the Greek text, is not more promising to antiquarian and historical research, than is this solving the key to the Hamyaritic language. Many other inscriptions are known to exist which have not been copied, and others by reports of the Arabs; and traces of resemblance and of relationship exist in some of the letters of the Amharic or old Abyssinian, in the letters on the ancient Bactrian coins, and in the undeciphered characters at Al Hadhr, in Mesopotamia, and on the Lat of Firoz Shah, at Delhi, with those of the Hamyaritic or Musnad; and thus the key to this ancient alphabet promises to throw great light on ancient Oriental palæography generally.
* Now ascertained to have been first discovered by Mr. Salt. ("Essay on the Phonetic System." London, 1825.)
THE COURT OF QUEEN ANNE.
BY THE EDITOR.
BOOK THE THIRD.
CHAPTER THE EIGHTH.
OF THE SENTENCE PASSED ON DR. SACHEVERELL; AND WHAT FOLLOWED IT.
NEXT day the guards at Saint James's and Whitehall were doubled; the train-bands of Westminster were ordered to remain under arms; regular troops were posted in different quarters; and an address having been presented to the queen by the commons, praying that effectual means might be taken to suppress the tumults, and prevent their recurrence, a proclamation was immediately made to that effect, and a reward offered for the discovery of the authors and abettors of the late disturbances. In consequence of these vigorous measures, Sacheverell was obliged to abandon his triumphal chariot, and content himself with a chair, in which he was carried daily to Westminster Hall, very much shorn of his attendants.
The trial having continued upwards of a week, and the counsel for the defence having replied to the different articles of impeachment, Sacheverell pronounced the address prepared for him by Atterbury, Smallridge, and Friend, under the advice and with the revision of Harcourt and Phipps. Delivered with the utmost fervour, and with an air of entire conviction, this masterly and eloquent speech produced a strong impression on most of its hearers. Among them was the queen herself, who appeared much moved by it. It mattered not that it was directly opposed on certain points to the doctrines laid down in the discourse on which the prosecution was grounded; it mattered not that its asseverations were audacious, and its appeals startling; that it was, in short, little better than an artful recantation of the speaker's former opinions; it answered the purpose admirably, and was decisive of the issue of the trial. The research and learning displayed in it astonished the most critical, while its extraordinary power and pathos electrified and enchained the inattentive. The sterner position of the assemblage yielded it the tribute of their applauses, the gentler that of their tears.
By the publication of this speech, which immediately followed its delivery, the doctor's popularity reached its apogee, and the most confident anticipations of his honourable acquittal, or of a
sentence so lenient as to amount to acquittal, began to be entertained. In any event, the high-church party conceived they had triumphed, and their exultation knew no bounds. Dinners were given at the principal taverns and coffee-houses frequented by the Tories, and the guests sat long, and drank deeply, shouting over the anticipated downfal of the Whigs, and congratulating each other in enthusiastic terms on the brilliant figure cut by their apostle. Not a few disturbances occurred that night in the streets from the outrageous conduct of these revellers; but the peace-breakers expressing their contrition, when sober, were very lightly dealt with by the magistrates. Crowds, too, began to re-assemble about the precincts of the Temple and Westminster Hall, but as great decorum was observed by them, they were allowed to disperse of their own accord.
Throughout this celebrated process, a singular unanimity of opinion prevailed among the lower orders of the people. To a man, they espoused the cause of Sacheverell; stigmatized the prosecution as unjust and inimical to the church; and denounced its authors in no measured terms. As the trial drew to a close, and the managers replied to the doctor's defence, assailing him with virulent abuse, the indignation of the populace was roused to such a degree, that nothing but the precautions taken prevented new riots, worse than those which had previously occurred.
But not only were the people deeply interested in the controversy; it engrossed, from first to last, the attention of the upper classes of society, to the exclusion of every other topic of conversation; and the most feverish anxiety reigned throughout the capital and the larger provincial towns. Public business was altogether suspended, and the close of the trial was ardently desired, as the sole means of allaying the general ferment of the nation.
This did not occur till the 20th of March, when both houses of parliament having taken their seats, the question was put to the vote among the lords, and Sacheverell found guilty by a majority of seventeen. A plea in arrest of judgment was made for the doctor, but this was overruled, and on the following day sentence was pronounced.
It was to the effect that Sacheverell should be suspended from preaching for the term of three years, and that his sermon should be burned before the Royal Exchange, by the common hangman, in the presence of the lord mayor and the sheriffs.
Affording indubitable evidence of the weakness of the ministers, this mild sentence was received with every demonstration of satisfaction by their opponents, as well as by the populace generally. The greatest rejoicings were made. Liquor was freely distributed to the mob at certain taverns; and bands of highchurchmen, with oak-leaves in their hats, paraded the streets, chanting songs of thanksgiving for the liberation of their champion. Bonfires were lighted at the corners of the streets, round
which crowds assembled to drink the doctor's health and happy deliverance, from great barrels of strong ale given them by certain generous Tories. All who passed by were compelled to pledge them. At night, most of the houses were illuminated, and those who declined to follow the general example had their windows broken by the drunken and uproarious mob. Attempts were made in some quarters to disperse the crowds, and put out the fires; but whether the train-bands were intimidated, or little desirous of putting their orders into execution, certain it is, that the licence of the populace remained unchecked, and crowds continued to occupy the streets to a late hour. Some few stragglers, too much intoxicated to offer resistance, were seized, and conveyed to the roundhouses, but they were discharged next morning with gentle reprimands for their inebriety.
In Pall Mall, nearly opposite Marlborough House, a large bonfire was lighted, and around it some hundreds of persons were collected. Plenty of liquor had been supplied them, and after shouting for some time for Sacheverell and the Tories, they began to yell against the ministers, and prompted by some of Harley's myrmidons, who had mixed with them, gave three groans for the Duke of Marlborough, and one for the duchess.
At this juncture, and as if prepared for the event, two men suddenly appeared carrying a sedan-chair. Their object being explained, a passage was made for them by the crowd, and they moved on till they reached the edge of the fire. The chair was then opened, and one of the men, who appeared to be a valet, dressed in his master's clothes, took forth a figure tricked out in an old black horsehair perriwig, a tattered scarlet robe, and a hideous mask. It had a paper collar round its neck, and a white staff in its hand.
"Here's de lord-treasurer of England, de Earl of Godolphin !" shouted the man, in a strong French accent, which was supposed to be assumed.
Much laughter followed, and several voices cried, "Into the fire with him! Into the fire with him!" "Not yet," replied the fellow; "vait till nion."
you see his
compa"Here he is!" cried the other man at the sedan-chair—a tall, scraggy personage, wrapped in a loose regimental great coat, and having a nose and chin like a pair of nutcrackers-"Here he is !" he repeated, holding up another figure, wearing an absurdlyferocious mask, a soiled military coat, a laced hat, and a pair of huge jack boots.
"Dis is de commander-in-sheaf-de great Marlbrook!" continued the scraggy man, with the hooked nose, shewing the effigy to the spectators, who replied by shouts of laughter, mingled with some expressions of disapprobation. "Dese are. de very boots he wear at
Further speech was cut short by a great stir amid the crowd,
and a loud voice exclaimed, “It's a lie!-an infernal lie! which none but a Frenchman would utter.”
The next moment, Scales, followed by Proddy, rushed forward. Having seen what was going forward from the steps of Marlborough House, they had determined, in spite of every risk, to stop such disgraceful proceedings.
As soon as the serjeant got up to the chair, he snatched the figure from the grasp of the man who held it, and trampled it beneath his feet. “Shame on you !” he cried, looking round.
“ Is it thus you treat the defender of your country, and the conqueror of its enemies? Is it thus you show honour to the victor of Blenheim and Ramilies?"
“ Who are you that talk thus to us?" demanded a by-stander. “Who am ỉ ?" rejoined the serjeant. “One who has a right
I to speak, because he has followed the duke in all his campaigns. One who has bled with him, and would willingly bleed for him. One who would rather have left his corpse on the field of Malplaquet than live to see his commander so grossly insulted by those who are bound to honour and respect him.”
“ If that don't touch your hearts they must be harder than stones," cried Proddy, passing his hand before his eyes. “ Are you Englishmen, that you allow a couple of beggarly mounseers to insult your great general in this way-to say nothin' of his friend the lord-treasurer ? If
don't blush for yourselves, I blush for you."
“ Mounseers !” exclaimed a by-stander. “What are these two ill-looking rascals, mounseers ?”
“ As sure as I'm her majesty's coachman!" said Proddy.
“ It's Mr. Proddy himself!" cried several voices. “We know him very well."
“I wish you knew him better, and copied his manners,” replied the coachman, "for then you'd never act as you have done. Look at these two tremblin' cowards! Are they men to be allowed to offer an insult to the Duke of Marlborough?"
“No-no," cried a hundred voices. “ We didn't know they were mounseers. We ask your pardon, Mr. Proddy. We were wrong-quite wrong.'
“Don't ask my pardon,” rejoined Proddy; "ask the duke's. Show your sorrow by better conduct in future.”
“We will, we will,” replied those nearest him. “What shall we do to satisfy you ?"
“ Give three cheers for the duke, and then read these rascals a lesson,” replied Proddy.
Three lusty cheers were then given, during which the two Frenchmen, almost frightened out of their senses at the change wrought in the temper of the mob, endeavoured to escape. “Stop 'em !" roared the sergeant-“stop 'em!"
Ay, ay !-here they are, safe enough,” cried several of the by-standers, arresting them.