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Renounce the towery menace of thy brow,
Then shall no feuds our triple realm divide,
MISCHANCE OF FRENCH GALLANTRY, A HUMOROUS $ ANECDOTE.
Spectatum admissi risum teneatis? Hor.
Admitted to the sight, would you not laugh?
....I Shall conclude my letter, descriptive of the fete in honour of the peace, with this laughable anecdote:
A lusty young Frenchman, whom, from his headdress A la Titus, I shall distinguish by that name, escorting a lady, whom, on account of her beautiful hair, I shdll style Berenice, stood on one of the hindmost benches. The belle, habited in a tunic r> la Grecqite, with a species of sandals which displayed the elegant form of her leg, was unfortunately not of a stature sufficiently commanding to see over the heads
of other spectators. It was to no purpose that the gentleman called out A bos les chapeuux! When the hats were off, the lady still saw no better. What will not gallantry suggest to a man of fashionable education? Our considerate youth perceived, at no great distance, some persons standing on a plank, supported by a couple of casks. Confiding the fair Berenice to my care, he vanished; but, almost in an instant he reappeared, followed by two men, bearing an emptj hogshead, which, it seems, he procured from the tavern at the west entrance of the Thuilleries. To place the cask near the feet of the lady, and fix her on it, was the business of a moment. Here then she was, like a statue oa its pedestal, enjoying the double satisfaction of seeing and being seen. But, for enjoyment to be complete, we must share it with those we love. On examining the space where she stood, the lady saw there was room for two, and accordingly invited the gentleman to place himself beside her. In vain,he resisted her entreaties; in vain he feared to incommode her. She commanded; he could do no less than obey. Stepping up on the bench, he thence nimbly sprang to the cask; but, oh! fatal catastrophe! while, by the light of the neighbouring cluster of lamps, every one around was admiring the mutual attention of this sympathizing pau, in went the head of the hogshead.
Our till then envied couple fell suddenly up to the middle of the leg in the wine-lees left in the cask, by which they were bespattered up to their very eyes. Nor was this all: being too eager to extricate themselves, they overset the cask, and came to the ground, rotting in it, and its offensive contents. It would be n» c
easy matter to picture the ludicrous situation of Citizen Titus and Madam Berenice. This being the only mischief resulting from their fall, a universal burst of laughter seized the surrounding spectators, in which I took so considerable share, that I could not immediately afford my assistance.
AN ANTISUARIAN IN THE EGYPTIAN CATACOMBS.
Tliou com'st in such a questionable shape
That I will speak to thee.
Let me not burst in ignora
Why thy embalmed bones;
Have burst their cerements >" Shakspeare.
.... When the French Abbe arrived at the Catacombs, he was received with affected impatience by those of his fellow travellers who had remained with the Moors whilst he ascended the pyramid. "What!" said Montval, " do you make us wait, on whose account we came hither? The Moors have finished their work this quarter of an hour. You may now descend into this dismal vault, if you have the courage."—Yes, certainly, I shall go down. It is of great importance to know whether the ancient Egyptians laid their mummies flat in these caves, or whether they placed them upright against the wall. In a moment I shall be able to tell you."—"Will you go down alone?'1—" Why not."— "It would be as well that some one should go with
you; one does not know "—" Do you suspect that
there will be any danger?" —" No: but in a dark cavern fancies may arise: one might be frightened, and
the phantoms of the imagination..."—" You wish to terrify me, but I have a strong head. These vaults have been closed so many ages that I shall not even find a bat."—" Why, that is according. .. ."—" How! what do you mean?"—"O! nothing...."—"But come, explain yourself."—" Well, since you desire to know my suspicions, I will tell you freely. The Moors are great knaves, as you have found. They promise all travellers to open catacombs for them that have never been opened before; but they never keep their word." —" So you think that I shall be made a dupe, and I shajl not have the advantage of being the first to descend into this catacomb?"—"I do think so."—" Are you certain of it'"—"You shall judge for yourself." At the same moment the Moors invited the Abbe to place himself in a large basket, to the handle of which they had fastened a cord. Furnished with a candle, and every thing necessary to light it, the Abbe took leave of his friends, and caused himself to be let down to the bottom of the ^cavern. The noise made by the basket touching the bottom echoed suddenly, and was prolonged in the_ surrounding cavities. "What a people was this," said our antiquary to himself, " who knew how to do honour to a man even after his death, by assigning so noble an assylum to his remains! Can the art of embalming bodies be lost then for ever? that art which seemed to preserve men from destruction, and, in some sort, prolonged his life through whole ages? Dr. Shaw mentions seeing one, the muscles of which were very well preserved; perhaps I shall have the same satisfaction."
He got out of the basket, and, having lighted his candle, begin to look around him. Empty coffers, and mummies half stripped of their bandages, struck his eyes.
O!" cried he, " Montval was Tight j the Moors have deceived me. These vaults have already been several times opened, and n\y discoveries in this place will be lost to science!" As he spoke these words, he penetrated a little further into the vault, and he thought he heard a sigh. He stopped, a little agitated, and listened. Another sigh struck his ear. Suddenly an involuntary motion of terror seized him, but he blamed his timidity, and-endeavoured to take courage. After some moments' reflection, he waved the candle round him with a somewhat tremulous hand. But what was his suprise, when he saw, at the corner of the wall, a mummy falling from its place, with its coffin half open! The fall was succeeded by groans and stifled sighs. The Abbe, who had too much sense to attribute these sighs to a supernatural cause, armed himself with courage, and cast a glance on the complaining mummyHe saw it moving in its ancient bandages, and struggling to recover the u?e of its limbs, and to articulate sounds. He was examining it with attention mixed with dread, when he suddenly perceived shoes on the feet of the pretended mummy: "those are European shoes," said he; "no, you are not an Egyptian mummy; discover yourself, and do not think to terrify me. Who placed you there?"—Take pity on me! save me! They have robbed me, and wanted to make a mummy of me."—" What! are you a victim of the perfidy and avarice of the Moors? How I rejoice in the power of restoring you to the light!"—"Make haste, for I am