Page images

that nothing would serve but young Robert must the lonely stranger, had buried him, and so far be taken into the shop when he had done going to forgotten him and his dying requests, that years school; whereupon aunt Rebecca rejoiced with passed away before his last farewell, with a packet great joy, and whereupon also some wise ones, containing a lock of his hair and a breast-pin, who were not in Miss Kennet's secret, and never which Rebecca well remembered, together with a would be, and never could have understood it, if it circumstantial account of his death, written by had been whispered to them, declared that Rebecca one who had helped to dig his grave in the wil. was doing an unaccountable foolish thing for her- derness, reached, by a circuitons route, his native self: not but what the boy was very well, as boys village. went, but that she would find out some day what There were mourning and lamentations then. it was to be too generous and unsuspecting. Ah, Tears there were, and there was sorrow too deep well-a-day! and so it is, that "the children of this for tears. From that day of sad tidings, the aged world are wiser in their generation than the chil- shop-keeper drooped and drooped ; his faculties dren of light."

failed rapidly. A few months of painful imbeAnd there were other changes. The young cility, and then the utter decay of bodily power, farmer at the Grange-when no longer very and then death. young--had made a final and unsuccessful effort to win the lady of his love, and then, submitting " Robert Godfrey, Grocer, Draper, and General to his cruel fate, had suddenly bethought himself Dealer. Licensed to sell Tea, Tobacco, and Snuff. that " there are as good fish in the sea as there Agent to the Farmer's Fire Insurance Company," are out of it," or if not as good, passable fish, at and so forth. What with its new front and oak any rate. So he cast his matrimonial net into graining and varnish, the village shop, in these the sea, and chuckled hugely that he had got a later days, is brighter and smarter than ever. Rebecca at last. And so he had, and a very good There is a good substantial air of respectability Rebecca, and at the date to which our story has about it, moreover, which is quite pleasant to conbrought us, there were sweet sounds of infantile template. And the name! still the same name, music at the once solitary Grange. We might over the door, newly painted and gilded toon speak also of Mr. Peacock, once cordwainer and “Robert Godfrey." “ There's a story about bell-ringer, in honour of whom a muffled peal that,” says an aged gossip of ours, as we stand had been rung years before, and whose debt to his admiringly at her cottage door ; " and if you'll neighbour Godfrey had never been paid, and never come in and sit down, I'll tell it.' would be. But we pass by Mr. Peacock, and We like a story dearly, so we accept the invitaglance at Eglantine cottage--so named by Louisa tion, and listen to the village tale which we have Godfrey, because there was a smack of romance amplified here, and curtailed there, and fitted in the name, which she had picked up in some together, and narrated. interesting novel, and rescued from oblivion to “But, Rebecca--good Rebecca Kennet, what bloom anew in our village. The school had been further of her ?” a failure, as the old shop-keeper predicted, and · My story isn't all told yet,” says our friend. the triumph his sagacity thereupon obtained had “When old Robert died, there was a search for partly reconciled him to the maintenance of his his will, of course ; and it was found : and, as was daughter-in-law, who “ did not think she had expected, every stick and straw was left to Miss anything to thank the old man for, considering it Rebecca. The will had been made years and was his own son who had reduced her to eat the years, and had never been altered. Well, would bread of bitter dependence," as she said ; and who you think it, before the dear creature had time to likewise predicted that her husband would come turn round, she had notice given her that Mrs. home some day soon, to see after his rights, and Godfrey-that was the old man's daughter-in-law her rights, and their son's rights ; and then they meant to dispute the will, and get hold of the would know whether Rebecca Kennet was going property for her son, thinking, perhaps, if she to have it all her own way, to the end of the chap- could do that, she might manage to get hold of ter. And there were those who would have made her share. It was plain enough how it was : mischief of these oft-repeated words if it had been there was a gay sort of man who had lodged a in their power, which it was not, for Rebecca good bit of time at her cottage-Eglantine CotKennet, with all her sweetness, had a certain look tage, she called it—who had been brought up to of her own, which could stop the glibbest tongue the law, it seems, and he persuaded Mrs. Godfrey and put the boldest tale-bearer out of counte. that there was what he called a flaw in the will, and nance.

he could overtarn it for her, if she would promise to But what had become of Robert Godfrey of marry him when it was done. So she gave the Robert, the husband of Louisa ? For a year or promise, and he set to work. Poor young Robert ! two after his flight he wrote, at uncertain inter- he was almost out of his mind, when he found out vals, to his deserted wife, bidding her be of good what was going on; but he couldn't help it; only heart, for he would return some day, when for- he wouldn't leave his aunt, as he called Miss Retune had smiled upon him, to take her to the land becca, in this new trouble. And then there was a of his adoption. But then came a long interval of trial, and great expense attending it, no doubt; silence--a silence never more to be broken by him, for, kind as Miss Rebecca was, she wouldn't give for tidings came at last that his wanderings were in, as perhaps it was thought she would, but went over he was dead; he had died on some prairie through it all quietly. So, at last, the will was in the far west, whither he had accompanied a proved to be a good will, and Mrs. Godfrey lost band of adventurers, who, too much engrossed by her second husband along with the cause, and went their own concerns to mourn long or deeply for clean away from the village.

“And then, would you think it, as soon as the remembered that, although in such a place, and law-suit was over, Miss Rebecca called in a lawyer, devoted to such uses, they are invariably preserved and after she had settled a good income, for life, by the crimson coverlet before alluded to, except upon Mrs. Godfrey, she made over all the rest to on special occasions. young Robert, because he was the rightful heir of The house divided on the bill to which we just his grandfather, only keeping back enough for her referred, which was lost. On our readmission to self to live upon as a single woman, in case she the gallery, there were only eight peers present, should get past work. And then, till master and three of them immediately left. A stranger Robert was of age, she managed the business and would have thought, perhaps, that the house was kept house for him ; and when that time came, "up," and that they would have separated in a she gave all up into his hands; and that's how it moment. No such thing! The House of Lords is the name stands as it always did over the is very different in this respect from the House of door."

Commons. A noble earl rose and introduced quite “And now ?"

a new subject, on which he spoke for twenty “Why, now,

haven't you heard about it? Mr. minutes in a very masterly style. He concluded Robert is just going to be married ; and a nice, by moving for the production of certain papers, open-hearted young man he is; he takes after which was agreed to, and their lordships (who Miss Rebecca, I think, more than anybody else: were only six in number, including the lord chanwell, he is going to be married, and Miss Rebecca cellor) immediately adjourned. is going to leave the old place at last, though 'tis Returning once to the reporters' gallery of the much against his wishes ; but she won't live far House of Commons, to our surprise we found that off, and she says it is best for married people to the first person we met, on entering our apartment, have a clear house to themselves, so she is going was a member who had just made his maiden to retire, as she calls it; which means, I take it

, speech. We had passed unchallenged the avenues that she will lay herself out, more than ever, to do to our gallery, and at length had penetrated to the good, all sorts of ways, to everybody around, and terra incognita, where dull and prosy speeches are never lay down in peace, if she thinks there's any."licked into shape" and where the greatest orators thing left undone that might be done, to make of the day have their mightiest efforts fairly and another happy :-bless her!"

fully placed before an intelligent and admiring Yes, old friend, and blessed are such as she, public, who would otherwise have but a faint conwith all the blessings which belong to the peace- ception of their senatorial glories. The object of makers, the meek, the poor in spirit, the pure in the gentleman's visit was to get his speech inserted heart. The Master has spoken it.

verbatim from the mss. he held in his hand, in the papers of the next morning. For that purpose he inquired for Mr. Dod, who is a very important

functionary in our gallery. He was for a long A REPORTER IN.THE BRITISH SENATE. series of years a reporter of the debates in connec.

tion with the “ Times" corps, and on the resignaOne of those little episodes which ever and anon tion of the late superintendent of the reporters for relieve the often tedious monotony of the House that journal, was appointed to succeed him-a post of Lords, occurred on June the 3rd, when H. R. H. which his antecedents eminently qualified him to the duke of Genoa paid a visit to their lordships. fill with efficiency. He is a high, if not the very This distinguished foreigner is brother to the king highest, authority on matters parliamentary, wheof Sardinia, and appeared greatly interested in the ther of precedent or etiquette, and his “ Parliadiscussion which was going forward on the Alter- mentary Companion” is justly regarded as an ation of Oaths Bill. His presence was deemed a indispensable vade-mecum to those interested in fitting occasion for the removal of the crimson senators and senatorial affairs. It is, indeed, a cover by which the throne and chairs of state are complete historico-biographical repository of facts ordinarily concealed. The sight certainly was most and figures relating to the age, rank, family congorgeous, and not unworthy of being exhibited to nections, political views, and antecedents of the one of royal blood. There are upon the throne members of both houses. His "Peerage” and three chairs of state; the central seat is elevated “Electoral Facts "are unique and complete. These above the other two for the queen, that on the works, indeed, stand at the head of publications of right hand being appropriated to 1. R. 1. the their class. It is one part of Mr. Dod's duty to prince of Wales, and that on the left hand to prince despatch messengers to procure important doenAlbert. The queen's seat, or throne, stands seven ments, etc. from the members in whose orations feet high, and is constructed of mahogany of the they occur ; for, by an understanding which exists very finest description. It has an oblong footstool among the morning papers, if an honourable genabout four feet in length, gilded and adorned to tleman gives an important document to one journal, correspond with the throne and chairs. It may there is a proviso that it shall be immediately put interest our fair readers to state that the top of in type by the journal to which it is furnished, that this stool is covered with crimson velvet of the the others, if they think proper, may have copies richest and most costly kind, gorgeously em- of it. This plan, in many cases, works well enough, broidered in gold. The pattern is a rose of eight but it is often found to be most unsatisfactory in leaves, within a circular border, from which small its operation. Honourable gentlemen are not roses spray outwards to the corners. There is an probably aware that, from the lateness of the hour outer border of fleur-de-lis, and the tassels are of at which such copies are sent to the other papers crimson silk and gold thread. Some idea may be by that to which the document is originally given, formed of the costliness of these chairs when it is it is often impossible to get it in, and thus the


speech very often appears without it, in perhaps | lines. Indeed, there are gentlemen on the bench, every journal save that to which it was originally and numbers at the bar, who were mainly, if not sent. If, therefore, our honourable friends desire wholly, dependent on their resources as parliamentto make themselves absolutely certain that their ary reporters during that critical period of their quotations should appear in all the papers--and lives when their abilities were not yet sufficiently one would think that they must have that desire, known, and when, without some such aid, they if their object be the diffusion of right principles would probably have “ blushed unseen," instead of and useful information-let them take the hint becoming the observed of all observers." We here given, and make six copies, for only six are have men at the bar amongst us, we repeat, required, and send them by the inessenger, in who have taken their degrees with honour at the separate envelopes, to the reporters of the (1) universities, and others who have elevated them. "Times,” (2) “ Morning Advertiser,” (3) “Morn- selves from the mechanical arts, by the irresistible ing Chronicle,” (1) “ Daily News," (5) " Morning impulses of that genius which panted within them. Herald," and (6) “Morning Post.”

Some are authors of long standing, and others are To returu from this explanation, however, we editors of acknowledged ability; contributors to may add that the member in question was courte reviews and periodicals also abound. From our ously apprised by Mr. Dod, that his speech was, ranks, indeed, the editors of the mass of our by that time, probably in type from the transcribed periodical literature are drawn. notes of the gentlemen employed to take it, and to There is a diversity of grade in respect of talent this was appended a polite intimation that he would in the occupants of " our gallery," although all have abundant opportunities of expressing his views must have reached a certain point of ability before at sufficient length on future occasions.

they can be safely intrusted with the important Mr. Dod, in addition to his superintendence of duties of so responsible a function. Some are exthe corps of his own journal, as the senior reporter pert short-hand writers, and but indifferent rein the gallery, has, by common consent, a species porters ; others are admirable reporters, and deficient of general superintendence—a function to which in short-hand-writing power. The difference behe is peculiarly adapted. During the construction tween a short-hand writer and a reporter is not of the new house, this delegated authority was generally understood; and the confusion of the exercised to provide for our comforts; which, with two has led to many a disappointment on the part one exception, for which he is not at all responsible, of aspirants to "our gallery." The qualifications are well attended to. That exception is the venti- requisite are diametrically opposite, and the nature lation of the rooms which are provided for our of the duties are wide as the poles asuuder. When accommodation. They are well and conveniently competency in both branches is united in one person, furnished, but where ten or a dozen congregate, that constitutes an efficient parliamentary reporter. they must be either half suffocated with the close. This, however, in the full extent, is by no means a ness of the atmosphere, or expose themselves to all | common occurrence. A short-hand writer is one the dangers of checked perspiration, by sitting in who is able, or supposed to be able, to take down a strong current of air. Something might, and upon his short-hand notes the ipsissima verba of we trust will, be done to remedy this deficiency; the speaker, in the most literal sense of the terms; and then nothing further would remain to be de- while the reporter is one who has, or is supposed sired.

to have, judgment, discretion, and such a general The reporters' rooms often present very interest- knowledge of the subject which comes before him, ing scenes, when we are all huddled out during a and superadded to these a peculiar tact for conden-division. An amiable gentleman, (doubtless with sation, as will enable him to express, in a terse form, the benevolent intention of doing the reporters a the ideas of a speaker, and divest them of that favour) has made a motion to allow of their being diffuseness and verbiage into which almost all expresent during the division ; but we may take the temporaneous orators are continnally led. It must liberty of stating that such a course is not wise, be obvious to the most superficial observer, that but otherwise. No one in "our gallery” will thank the parliamentary reporter requires both these him; quite the other way. By a division we often powers during almost every debate to which it is get ten minutes' respite in the midst of a heavy his lot to listen; for, even when the most impordebate, and return with renewed vigour to our tant topics are under discussion, speakers who will task.

not bear verbatim reporting, are sure to have someSuch of our readers as have glanced at the thing to say, and their suggestions are ofttimes of columns of provincial papers, are often surprised at great value. It would often be intense cruelty to the brief but comprehensive and intelligent news this deserving class of members to print verbatim, resumé of the “ London correspondents. Most of their occasionally unfinished and often confused these gentlemen officiate in "our gallery.". We sentences; but by a judicious reporter, all their have also a very plentiful sprinkling of briefless pertinent suggestions are preserved in a fluent barristers, and several who have long since escaped form, and their offences against Lindley Murfay from that melancholy category. It is no uncom. are concealed from the public eye. But while mon case for a barrister to attain a very respect there is not an honourable gentleman in the house able position in his profession, and yet to retain his whose speeches do not sometimes need to be subpost amongst us, as the money thus earned is an jected to this process of judicious distillation, still addition to his revenue by no means to be despised. there are often great orations" set speeches"When he rises yet higher, and his practice in prepared with much care, and delivered with elecreases to an extent which will warrant such a gance and accuracy, which cannot be thus treated. step, he generally bids us a respectful adieu. A case it would be equally unjust to attempt to conof this kind occurred on the day we penned these dense these as it would be to print verbatim those before alluded to. Take Macaulay, for instance: 1 report in detail, their mere short-hand becomes an he cannot be condensed; if he is abbreviated, it is insignificant acquisition as compared with their only by mutilation! The great efforts of Disraeli

, varied knowledge of public affairs, which, in many Lord John Russell, and others, may be placed in the cases, is truly wonderful. Their position, too, is same category. While every idea suggested and most favourable to the indefinite extension of their every fact uttered during a speech of half an hour, general information, from their compulsory reguby some members, have often been clearly expressed larity in Parliament, and the necessarily minute in one third of a column, and even less, half an attention they are compelled to pay to men and hour of Macaulay, the other night, made more measures as they come before the house, and, than two side columns of the small type in the through their agency, before the public. morning paper with which we have the honour to If you look down into the body of the house, be connected. To judge of the labour involved in you will see the Rt. hon. Benj. Disraeli, ex-chansuch a “turn,” an attempt should be made to tran- cellor of the exchequer, Mr. Maguire, and Mr. scribe one of these columns--a task which few M‘Mahon-all these, and probably several others would have the patience to complete, how eloquent unknown to the present writer, have occupied seats soever might be the speech selected for transcrip- in “our gallery" at the commencement of their tion.

respective careers. Between these two extremes, there is a class of À recent alteration in the House of Commons speakers whose observations, although they cannot deserves notice. There is no gas-lamp anywhere be entirely recast and condensed, may yet be visible, the house being lighted wholly from the briskly pruned with great advantage. In fact, roof, at the top of which are large square panes of these shades of difference are so minute and varied, figured glass, through which, by the aid of a large that, to do justice to the merits of the speaker, number of jets of gas and powerful reflectors, 3 and, at the same time, to have a due regard to the strong light is cast down into the house. The value of spacem-this constitutes the grand difficulty process is very ingenious, no doubt, yet it is any. of the parliamentary reporter. Then there is the thing but agreeable to the eyes of the reporters, fact staring him in the face, that he has no time to as may easily be imagined. The members have weigh the matter ; he must have ability enough to the advantage of being

at a greater depth from it, dash it off as fast as he can put pen to paper ; and and by generally keeping their hats on, their brims to crown all, he remembers that there will be five serve as a sort of protection. So strong, howerer, other papers to compare with his before he leaves is the light in our gallery, that we cannot distin. his bed the next morning. If he published at the guish sometimes even personal friends in the end of the week, or even a few hours after his con- strangers' gallery, at the opposite end of the temporaries, he could avail himself of their labours ; house. but they all appear at the same hour, and he has There is a mysterious place of resort over our probably two more " turns" of equal difficulty, to rooms, in which ladies peep down upon the house prepare for which he must plunge at once into the through a pretty floriated grating. One might be chaos of his hieroglyphic note-book, while an years in the body of the house, and perhaps inky little satellite of the printer rushes off with months even in our gallery, without being coguieach individual slip of paper the moment it is zant of this interesting fact. Nothing appears to covered.

be generally known of this gallery, except that it Under the pressure of the multifarious difficul- seems impossible to find out who is there, and ties here imperfectly suggested, a charitable view difficult to know how they get there. We should must be taken of the numbers of clever and ex- be sorry to be so upgallant as to interfere with cellent men who have distinguished themselves on the fair ones; but the cold air sometimes rushes provincial papers by the accuracy of their reports down from their gallery most uncomfortably upon and their general ability in newspaper work, but our heads. So disagreeable did this become a who, on coming to London and entering our short time back, that several of us were compelled, gallery," have completely failed. Many a man, in self-defence, to be so impertinent as to protect eminent in general reporting, has given up a lucra- our heads from the sudden check of cold air by tive appointment on a country paper, on a chance the adoption of unique and variegated skull-caps. presenting itself of getting into that branch of the This singular expedient had its effect, and we are profession which is justly considered the summit of now rarely troubled in the same direction. The a reporter's ambition, but who has signally failed; fair ones, in spite of the libellous charge of garand, of late years, the peripatetic professors of new rulity which is often brought against them, genesystems of short-hand have added largely to the rally keep very quiet; but we often do hear a word number of these disappointments by their extrava- or two, from that interesting quarter, where the gant pretensions as to the brevity and legibility of speakers are invisible; and it certainly is enough their systems, and the rapidity with which they are to disconcert the most placid old stager, to have falsely said to be acquired.

his attention cut short in the middle of a long and After the peep within the veil which we have brilliant peroration from Macaulay or Disraeli, by endeavoured to afford in these remarks, the reader a tittering feminine whisper of,“Oh! do come will be prepared to hear that the mere knowledge here, Amelia !" of short-hand forms a very small portion of those acquirements which are essentially necessary to the successful reporter. This is especially true

THOUSANDS in their last hours have acknowledged the with reference to parliamentary, reporters, as, annals of our species, who has bequeathed it to us, as his

vanity of the world; but who is that individual, in the from the vast diversity of the subjects they are last testimony, that religion is a vain thing, or that it is called upon, now to express briefly, and anon to possible to be too religious ?

journey, they had reached the spot, they found “ MURDER WILL OUT."

nothing but a little empty hovel. The following remarkable incident, which we copy As long as they had powder and shot they supfrom a daily journal, is worthy of being placed ported life with the game which they killed, but upon permanent record, as affording a fresh illus- which they were obliged to eat raw, as they had no tration of the retributive justice which, even in fuel wherewith to make a fire. When their prothis world, so generally tracks the footsteps of the vision of ammunition was exhausted, nothing reevil-doer. The crime to which we are about to mained for them but to die. Andrei Kalikin died refer took place in Russia.

at the end of four weeks, and Ivan Sinej having “ In the month of May, 1851, a schooner was recorded this event with the others on the stock despatched from the village of Soroka, near the of his gun, added that he also was very weak, and town of Kemi, to Spitzbergen, with orders to re- felt the approach of death, which probably ensued main the winter over in the latter place. The after a short while. schooner was commanded by a captain, by the name “The murderer and his companions had in the of Ivan Goosdaroff, and having under him a mate, meanwhile arrived at Berlevaag, in East Finmark, by name Jacob Isakoff, and seven sailors. Some having, as they pretended, lost two of the crew on time after the vessel had arrived at Spitzbergen, their way from Spitzbergen, and one man died the mate and the greater number of the crew be- after their arrival in Berlevaag, and was buried came desirous of returning home, and demanded there. Having hired two Norwegian sailors to that the captain should accede to their wishes, be- make up their loss, they proceeded to Vardo, where fore winter set in. The captain, however, refused, a Russian skipper allowed them to take two of his telling them that they were bound to obey him, crew in lieu of the Norwegians, and with these and to fulfil the engagements they had entered they returned to Soroka. Here they reported that into; and, in consequence, the mate, in particular, the captain and the rest of the crew had perished on was very much inoensed against him.

a whaling expedition at Spitzbergen, but as suspi. One day, when the captain had gone on shore, cions were entertained against them, they were with two of the men, Ivan Sinej and Andrei Kulis placed under arrest. However, no evidence could kin, to shoot wild fowl, it appears that the men at that time be brought against them, and they remaining on board, having consulted with each were therefore soon again liberated. other, had come to the determination of sailing “But the crime was not long to remain unaaway and leaving the captain and the two above venged. In the month of March, last year, a vesnamed men to their fate; for when the captain, sel from Hammerfest, in Norway, happened to who was the first to give up the sport, came down anchor at Spitzbergen, near the spot where Ivan to the seashore and called for a boat, a long time Sinej and Andrei Kulikin died. The corpse of the elapsed before his order was attended to. At latter was found outside the cabin, that of the length the mate and a sailor, by name Gregori, former in the cabin, and at its side the gun with came with a boat, both having their guns with the portentous inscription. The Norwegians buthem. When the captain expressed his displeasure ried the corpses, and carried away with them the at their want of promptitude in obeying his orders, gun, which on their return to Hammerfest was the mate told him that unless he fired off his gun, despatched by a Russian ship to Archangel, and he would not take him back in the boat. The delivered into the hands of the governor there. skipper complied; but instead of allowing him to The murderers were in consequence immediately get into the boat, the mate now ordered Gregori seized and examined. On seeing the tell-tale gun, to shoot him down. Gregori immediately obeyed they at once confessed their guilt, and confirmed orders, but missed his aim, and the captain was all the facts stated there as far as they were acabout to fly, when the mate, rushing forward, quainted with them. They further confessed that caught him and held him fast. The skipper now as Gregori, who had first fired at the captain, had implored the men to spare his life, but finding subsequently laid claim to assume the chief comthem inexorable, he at length bared his breast, mand of the vessel, they had thrown him overbegging them not to torture him but to put him board, and that later still, when, during the course to death at once. Unmoved by his submission, of their voyage, one of the other men expressed the mate fired, and the captain fell

, a ball having remorse at what had been done, they had also passed through his heart; and the murderers, thrown him overboard, for fear of his betraying taking bis gun with them, hurried off to the them. The man who died on their arrival at Bership, set sail, and directed their course home. levaag had also, in a manner, been put to death, wards.

for as he expressed excessive joy at the thought of From some heights behind the scene of action, meeting countrymen on shore, they thought this the two men who had accompanied the captain on portended evil, and availing themselves of his inshore had been witnesses of the dreadful deed, and ordinate love of brandy, they induced him to drink when they arrived on the beach, they found the to such an excess that he died in consequence.” skipper's corpse, which they buried on the spot. Ivan Sinej, who knew how to write, then immediately scratched on the stock of his gun a succinct narrative of what had taken place, as also the EIGIT USEFUL DIRECTIONS.-1. Let not the wisdom name of the murderer ; and as they feared that of the world be your guide.-2. Let not the way of the they might starve to death in this desert spot, the world be your rule.-3. Let not the wealth of the world be two men then went to a place seventy wersts from your chief good. 4. Let not the cares of the world enthence, where they hoped to meet with some of you.6. Let not the crosses of the

world disquiet you.

cumber you.-5. Let not the comforts of the world entangle their countrymen; but when, after a most fatiguing | 7. Be not too fond of life.-8. Be not too fearful of death.

« PreviousContinue »