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the exertion of the evening, that she merely got through it, and that with great difficulty.
Every indulgence should be allowed to those who have exerted their best days in the service of the public, when necessity compels them to come forward in the winter of their age, and at so advanced a period. In her seventy-first year it was not to be expected that the physical energies could retain the vigour of their maturity: her voice in the necessary course of nature having lost its power, she was not happy in selecting a place that required more voice to fill than she was at that time able to supply; but, allowing for all circumstances, the exertion she made was creditable. Now and then a portion of her former spirit and brilliancy seemed to break forth; her shake, which was so sweet, so prolonged, and so pleasing, was the least impaired : she was now rather the teacher than the example, showing how it ought to be done, though she failed to do it herself. Those who heard her in her prime must admit that she was the most impressive singer the Continent ever sent to this country.
It was to be lamented that she was not, on such an occasion, better attended, and that, at her advanced age, she stood in need of pecuniary assistance. By the conflagration of Moscow she lost all the earnings of her many years' exertions, and she was in consequence so much distressed as to be now forced to present herself to the public when the power of pleasing was no longer hers.
She shortly after quitted England, and retired to Revel, in Russia; there, in 1824, she had nearly lost her life, by being thrown down in the streets, when a carriage ran over her, and, to the astonishment of every one, she only received some bruises, from which she soon recovered.
On the celebration of her eighty-second birthday in 1831, about seventy of the most distinguished persons of Revel and its neighbourhood gave a banquet to this ci-devant cantatrice. The pleasures of the scene were greatly enhanced by the performance of an ode written by Goethe, in which he retraced the enthusiasm produced by her first appearance in Matastasio's Oratorio, “S Elena al Calvario,” in the year 1771, when Goethe heard her for the first time: she was then plain Mademoiselle Schamalin, and he a stripling student of twenty-two. The ode was set for four voices by Hummel; but, before it was performed, she received a finely-embellished copy of it from a daughter of Kotzebue. In the evening there was a public concert, and of this Madame Mara was again the delightful prima-donna. The ode was again repeated, with increased effect, before a crowded audience, by some of her own pupils and friends.
Her society was much courted, and she still displayed powers of conversation that were surprising at her advanced age. She, with great kindness, assisted at one of the meetings of the Singing Academy, and gave her opinion and advice to some of the singers. After a long life of laborious exertion in the cause of her art, she was under the necessity till the last of receiving pupils.
She died at Revel on the 20th of January, 1832, having entered her eighty-fourth year.
THE IRISH QUAKER.
“ An old friend with a new face."--Common Saying.
Well, dear Papa, what news from the City ?” inquired Arabella Winter, as her father threw himself into his well-padded chair on reaching his house in Keppel-street.
“ I have news, my darling, 'tis true, but not absolutely from 'Change: you may expect a visitor."
“ A visitor! when and whence ?” “ From Ireland, love."
“Now who, in pity's name, do we know in Ireland that can pay us a visit?"
“ The son to one of my old correspondents, Unthank, Ash, Fry, and Co., as worthy men as ever wore broad brims. The heir of the senior partner is, to use the language of the counting-house, consigned to me, and here is the bill of parcels :
“Cork, June, 183–, «« Friend Winter,-My eldest born son, Phineas, is about to visit thy city; I pray thce give unto him food and lodging for the brief space that he will sojourn in the capital; and, moreover, I beseech thee to guard his youth and inexperience from the dangers, temptations, and vanities which will surround him. Thy compliance will be acceptable to
“o Thy friend,
“ Matthew UNTHANK.'' “ And do you mean to receive this person, Papa ? We shall be bored to death. What on earth shall we do to amuse the young man ? besides, where can he be lodged, as his old father calls it ?"
“ In your brother's room; you know we are not to expect him till after the 24th, on which day his leave of absence commences, and by that time our Irish friend may have returned to his own home.”
“ What, Papa, after all the pains I have taken to make Sydney's room so comfortable—had all his pictures newly framed-his Wellington and York hung by blue ribbands--the battle-pieces nicely arranged on one side, and the hunting, shooting, and fishing subjects on the other—the portraits of his theatrical favourites, too—and vow to take them down, because we have got a Quaker coming to lodge with us! Do, dear Papa, give him a bed at the counting-house ; Lothbury, I'm sure, is quite lively enough for him; and you can make old Saunders, the porter, get his dinner and look after him; don't bring the wretch here."
Bella, you are a spoiled child, but I must have my own way in this instance. I have had transactions to the amount of thousands with these Cork merchants ; they have conferred many favours on me, and liever till now asked one in return : it would be ungracious, not to say ungrateful, to refuse; beside, love, do not allow us to be accused of want of hospitality by a native of a country who make that social virtue their boast. The young man will not be here till late to-night, so, after dinner, do, like a good little soul, get all in order for our guest. You know you have been sole mistress since I lost your dear mother, and
have often played the hostess; so now I leave all to you, sure that everything must be as I wish.”
It was impossible to disobey so doating a father, and Arabella at once set about the necessary preparations. All the finery of Sydney's room was removed, and the apartment rendered as plain as possible, with due attention to the comfort of the expected visitant. Miss Bella had serious thoughts of ordering the cheval glass to be carried to her own room, but her maid pleaded
" Do, Miss, let this cretur that's coming see his own ugly face and gawky figure at full length; perhaps 'twill frighten him."
Ann little knew that in few houses do we find more splendid or larger mirrors than in those inhabited by the worthy members of the Society of Friends.
“ I wonder what delays the traveller," said Mr. Winter, pulling out his watch, “ 'tis some time after ten, and the Bristol coach reaches Hatchett's before nine these long summer days. We will give him a little law, but, if not here by eleven, we will have up the supper-tray,
Father and daughter did their best to beguile the time, though their conversation was interrupted by listening to every carriage that came within hearing, and by the usual exclamations of “ This must be he! No, gone past-how provoking !" from the merchant; and “ If he is to come at all, I wish he'd come at once," from the somewhat annoyed young mistress of the mansion.
There still existed in these oriental regions, as they have been denominated by a wit of our day, venerable somnambulists, called, none knew why, Charlies and watchmen-one such now murmured through his dream, with habitual instinct, “ Past eleven;" the hand of Mr. Winter was upon the bell-rope to order supper, when the rattling of a hackney-coach to the door put an end to suspense, and in a few moments a voice was heard to inquire“ Does Francis Winter dwell here, why?”
This direct question was put in no measured or nasal tone, but with a rapidity and strong brogue that rendered it almost laughable.
“ Tell him, then,' continued the visitor, in answer to the servant's “ Yes, Sir," “ that Phineas Unthank, of Cork in Ireland, is here, and craves speech with him. Dost thee hear, friend? and what dost thee smile at, why!”
The why, of true Kerry origin, appeared to have entirely superseded the conventional umph! with which the language of the Quaker has been so long and so falsely saddled.
The servant ushered the stranger into the parlour; Mr. Winter and Arabella rose to receive him. He was somewhat above the common stature, his figure admirably proportioned, his features of remarkable beauty, set off by chestnut hair, which, in spite its close cut, rebelliously inclined to curl; there was, too, an expression of vivacity in his countenance utterly at variance with the staid formality of the dark brown suit he wore, and the capacious beaver which still shaded his expansive forehead.
My dear Sir, you are welcome to England,” said the worthy merchant, advancing with outstretched hand : “ let me introduce you to my daughter.”
Arabella curtsied smilingly, and Phineas, regarding her with fixed
attention for an instant, impulsively, unconsciously doffed his beaver, then uttered in some haste
“ Thy apartment is mighty warm, friend Winter," and pretended to clear his brow from the effects of heat by the application of his handkerchief.
Arabella saw for the first time a specimen of Quaker's politeness, mingled with the innocent cunning necessary to preserve their unbending character; it was not the atmosphere, but her presence, that had rendered this finesse needful. Phineas looked as if aware that this ruse had as ill accounted to others as to himself for his un-friendly bit of gallantry; he strove to cover his nervous confusion by a series of brief abrupt nods, and “Howst thee do-s,” which had a far more offhand air than the cool bow of an exquisite could have worn.
Ignorant prejudice unjustly accuses the Quakers of " Thee-ing and thou-ing.” Only in cases of necessity are the best educated of them so scrupulously grammatical as to force thou on its rightful tour of duty. Poor thee, au contraire, is made to do his lazier brother's work with his own, as the discourse of young Unthank will illustrate.
The trio were shortly seated at the supper-table, and Phineas, who had been all day upon the road, did ample justice to the fare ; nor were his eyes idle, for he regarded the lovely girl who sat near him with a gaze so ardent as to cause a more than usual assemblage of roses on her cheek. Mr. Winter inquired if any accident had occurred on the road to account for the late hour of his young guest's arrival.
“ None, friend Winter, it is thyself thee hast to blame; my father informed me that thy dwelling-house was in a part of London called Lothbury, whither I directed my luggage to be taken; after knocking and ringing there for some time, a voice from a window, in the highest part of the dwelling, demanded what I wanted. At saying that I craved house-room and food at thy hands, the same voice, with much of charity in its accent, implied a concise accordance with my desire that I might obtain such advantages, and closed the casement. I expected from this to see the door open, and to be admitted to thy house; but, being shortly somewhat tired of waiting in the dark street, I again knocked at the gate; but, whilst in the act, a man having a blue garment, and a japanned top to his hat, came up and tould me that thee didst abide not in Lothbury, but in Bloomsbury; he likewise advised my getting into a street-coach, and making my way to thee; thus thee seest, friend Winter, the delay was no fault of mine at all. Now, I feared, that thy household might be all a-bed here, therefore informed the last speaker of what the voice from above had expressed in my behalf. This man jocosely expounded that thy porter, who alone had a dormitory at the warehouse, was what he made bould to call a surly old-somethingafter the fashion of the world, and that his phrase, which I repeated, 'I wish you may get it,' being interpreted, signified if I did procure the rest and refreshment I sought, it should not be by his manes; why! I give you, that is, I give ye both, my hon-cst word, this irony was to me new, a slight matter, yet at once ludicrous and edifying. There be sundry and several, who, when they say they wish one any good, as truly mean they will do nothing to help one towards that same. Such am not I in now wishing theeHe filled his glass, and continued to Arabella
Thy father said not if thee wast wedded or single, neither spoke he
thy Christian name, why! now for me to be after re-iterating friend Francis Winter's daughter were tadious.”
“ Strangers call me Miss Winter," replied the young lady, with pretty dignity. “ Yea, strangers, but not friends," punned the youth.
Arabella,” kindly put in the papa. “ Then, friend Arabella, dear," quoth the guest," it is not in the spirit of thy father's uncivil porter that I wish thee-hem !-since thou art a maiden, and I rejoice thereat, why!- I wish thee a good husband, entirely, Arabella Winter."
The hospitable merchant, after this, frequently filled the traveller's glass with choice Madeira, and the eyes of the youth sparkled with additional brightness, as he replied to Arabella's question of how he liked what he had seen of England.
“ Thy country, friend, is extremely fair to look on, and, in troth, so are the damsels—I mane the people; but think not that I have never seen the beauties of nature before. The vicinity of my native city abounds in fine views, both of land and water; and, although it is fairly enough affirmed by strangers that it rains for nine months out of the twelve there, why! still, when the sun does shine, I think it smiles as movingly as doth a comely woman with a tear in her eye.”
“Of course you never read Moure ?” said Miss Winter. “Nay, I protest only extracts. I have a book full of them :-his Flying Fish,' his · Weary Wretches,' and others as good as hymns, within a thrifle. Assuredly I have chosen the better part. But, faith, I fear that I must cease to hold converse with thee, for the present, for I attest the hand of the dial points to past midnight, why! With thy lave, and thy father's, I will seek my chamber.”
Saying which he rose, his kind host lighting a taper to show him the way.
“ Fare thee well, friend Arabella. I wish thee paceful slumbers. We shall meet, plase Goodness, again in the morning.'
' La, Miss," said Ann, as she attended her young mistress to her room, “ I thought you'd never get rid of that long-winded Quaker man. You must be precious tired of his company, the formal thing! You'll have a nice head-ache, to-morrow, I expect. Why did you stay with the stupid cretur?"
“ Because he is anything but stupid, Ann; very intelligent person, I assure you, and who proves much more agreeable than I expected."
“ Well, all I say, Miss, is, the deuce take his imperance! walking in to dear Master with his nasty big hat on his head. There's pretty manners for you!”
“ If you run on in this strain I shall be certain of the head-ache you prophesy; so get along with you, and don't be so unmerciful in your dislike to my father's visitor.”
Arabella retired to her couch, wondering what prejudice could have induced her to make up her mind to hate the young
Unthank. On descending to the breakfast-parlour next morning, she learnt that her father and his guest had left home at the merchant's usual hour for visiting the city. A letter, in the well-known hand of her brother, lay on the table : it informed her that he was not under the necessity of waiting for the period specified in his last, but that he hoped to reach town time enough for a late dinner in Keppel Street that day.