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industry, and forget Kew Bridge. But when we have measure of enthusiasm. We wonder whether he a few hours' holiday, and see a trim little steamer saw Sion House as well as the neighbouring resiwith gilt letters on it, “ Kew and Richmond,” it is dence of sir Stephen Fox ; and, if he did, whether
“ a very cheerful thing to step on board and run up its appearance in his day was like what it is at the river, and exchange a smoky atmosphere for present. Had he seen it as we have seen it, surely one transparent and pure.
he would have been disposed to lengthen out his But, as we have said, in these rambles for your visit beyond five days. We should be glad of a service, fair reader-or if not fair, still gentlem-we few weeks there; but then we are neither princes do not avail ourselves of steamboats. If we go nor Dutchmen. Coming up the river from Kew on the stream, we must leisurely row along and Bridge on a bright summer day, when the water is take time to look about; yet at Kew Bridge it is calm, the wind gentle, the sky quite blue, and the necessary to disembark, just to glance at some sun is mounting overhead ; when the cattle are objects in the vicinity ere we proceed to our main grazing on the meadows, and the birds singing in destination, which just now is Sion House. the trees; when the angler is busy with rod and
The village of Kew is very pleasant. We like line, and the swans are nestling among the rushes ; the broad open green, with the trees here and what a beautiful background to the picture is there around it, and the old-fashioned respectable formed by the sloping lawns, the broad gardens, houses;
as to the church, despite of its archi- the majestic park, and the tall stately trees amidst tecture, there is even about that something which which the simple but yet noble-looking façade of we like. It has monuments to the memory of Sion House stands out in bold relief. The exterior three artists, Meyer, Kirby, and the more famous of the building, as seen from the river, makes little and gifted Gainsborough. Here he lies with the architectural pretension, but its position and acceswish fulfilled, "My name shall be my epitaph sories have an indescribable charm ; and one is alone,” and the place is just such as to make his irresistibly tempted to stop and land-to wander pictures of the Shepherd Boy in the Shower, and over that velvet turf, to go and gather those rich the Cottage Girl with her Dog and Pitcher, no lilacs, to thread those labyrinths of elm and chestbad accompaniments to the rural quiet of the green nut, or to sit down in the cool shadow of that which the churchyard borders. Perhaps, however, long arcade which forms the basement story of the the artist's representations of rustic character are building next the river. rather too bold and wild for the locality of Kew, The duke of Northumberland's generous dispowhich has about it something of that dignified coun- sition to gratify the public with a sight of his dotry air to be expected in the neighbourhood of a mains is well known, and we take this opportunity palace. Kew Palace is a comparatively small house, of expressing our sense of his kindness in grantwhich George the Third often occupied, and which ing us special permission to examine the beauties for its simplicity was in harmony with the tastes of the house and grounds, and so to gratify the of that monarch. It was afterwards one of the longing which the river view of the beautiful spot residences of the late duke of Cambridge. The had inspired in our mind. The turrets and towers, red-brick gables and chimneys peer out very pret- elements of castellated architecture, are hardly in tily from between the tall trees near the river-a keeping with Italian arcades, external stone stairspecimen of many such relics of the past century cases, and broad modern windows in double file all which adorn the broad lands of England.
round; but passing over all that-for we are not But the Botanical Gardens are the chief attrac- disposed just now to be critical such matters tion of Kew, and, for their extent, arrangement, we will walk to the grand entrance of the man. and specimens, are worthy of all the admiration sion, which lies on the opposite side facing the they have excited. It belongs not to our plan to west. We have often thought, on entering the notice at length every object of interest on the halls of our nobility, what an aspect of princely banks of the Thames, and it must suffice, in refer- grandeur they wear ; what indications of wealth ence to Kew Gardens, to remark that they were and resources they offer ; enough to stock the established in 1760 by the Princess Dowager of world with palaces, and in the persons of their Wales, and were much patronized by the royal owners to furnish' mankind with an abundant family, who cherished a taste for horticulture and supply of kings. botany. They have of late years been greatly im- The entrance-hall of Sion House is of the most proved ; and now the Victoria Regia and the col- magnificent description; and, its magnificence lection of tropical plants in the palm-house form apart, how light and cool and refreshing it is, with botanical attractions, which, in addition to a pro- its columns and statues and marble floor, as one fusion of curious and beautiful flowers, shrubs, and comes out of the hot air of a summer's noon. Astrees, are drawing together every summer multi- cending a few steps on the right hand, you reach tudes of visitors. The last time we were there, it the vestibule, which in fact seems to form part of struck us how much an English traveller would the hall, and which is so famous for its thirty verd have to say of such a place if he saw it in some antique columns and pilasters, said to be alone foreign country. But we must go back to our worth twenty thousand pounds, and forming the boat; and yonder is Sion House.
largest qnantity of that beautiful marble that can The warmest eulogium William the Third ever be found in any one mansion in Europe. The glapronounced on any place he visited is said to have diator in bronze, the statues of the Roman emperors, been in phlegmatic terms well worthy of a Dutch and the classic figures standing round in stately man—"I could live here five days.” Lord Exe- order, carry one's thoughts to Italy, and that ter's mansion at Burleigh, and sir Stephen Fox's great old empire which covered the world, and to house at Chiswick, were the only two residences that proud, artistic, and luxurious civilization that awakened in the monarch even this small / which it nourished and diffused, of which these
marbles are monuments; for the verd antique pil- | the only part of the building in which there came lars, they say, were found in the bed of the Tiber, over us any vivid recollections of the past history and all the chiselled forms about us are redolent of of the place and its illustrious occupants, those Roman times. In the dining-room, too, these re-quaint-looking figures in the costume of the six. miniscences are deepened by the mosaics from teenth century certainly did bring before us per. Adrian's villa, and the six beautiful statues copied sonages and incidents coeval with the first building from remains in the Vatican of Florence. Again of the palatial edifice, and with times still earlier. they are refreshed by the antique tables in the There was originally a convent of nuns at Sion, supdrawing-room, brought from the baths of Titus. pressed by Henry the Eighth, after whose death the The chiaro-scuro paintings, the carving and gilding property was granted, by Edward the Sixth, to the of the ceilings, and the rich silk damask with which Protector Somerset. All that was monastic here has the walls are hung, are in keeping with the an- long since disappeared ; but it is curious to know tique classic taste which pervades this portion of that the sisterhood perpetuated their conventual exthe building. Now and then it seems to us as if istence in succession down to the early part of the we were in some Italian villa, at the age of the present century, when they resided at Lisbon, in a revival of ancient art; and we could fancy ourselves nunnery which they called Sion House. The duke in the presence of some Lorenzo de Medici, re- of Northumberland at that time visited them, and joicing over the chaste adornments of his princely presented the ladies with a silver model of their yet rural home. The long and noble corridor, ex. old abode. “We still keep," said they, " the keys tending the whole front of the house next the of Şion House.".. " I dare say," he replied ; " but river, and fitted up as a library, tends to the con- we have altered the locks since then.' We have tinuance of our recollections of the same period ; no time here to enter into the long story of these and we might imagine we saw the literary Floren- nuns of St. Bridget at Sion, their wealth and imtine, with his learned associates, pacing up and portance, the alleged scandals of their house, the down the extensive but narrow apartment, so well inquiries instituted before the dissolution, the lined with costly books, and furnished with arti. result according to the report made by the comcles of comfort and luxury, conversing upon Cice- missioner, and such-like matters-sone of them ro's philosophy, or upon what still more harmo- rather wearisome, and others very disgusting. nizes with the spot, the pastoral poetry of Virgil
. But we cannot help thinking of the imprison. Those windows in such thick succession, opening ment here of Catherine Howard, the wife of Henry upon the lawn and the river, with the gardens and the Eighth, three days previous to her execution, grounds of Kew on the other side, as if the entire and of the resting of that king's corpse on the prospect belonged to one domain, tempt us away same spot upon the fifth anniversary of that execueven from the books, and entice us to stand and tion. The funeral procession was very gorgeous, linger over the broad expanse of sunny green, full and the corpse reached Sion House at night, where, of repose, and yet pregnant with a soft poetic in according to a ms. in the Sloane Collection, the spiration, such as would have impelled our favour- leaden coffin, which had been tumbled about by the ite master of Roman song to have written another rolling of the awkward carriage on the rough roads, eclogue. The soft flowing Thames and its villa- wetted the pavement with the monarch's blood. A studded banks would have been the very thing to dog, the ms. goes on to say, licked it up, in fulfil. soothe the mind and to swell the strains of Virgil
. ment of a friar's prediction, who likened Henry to Besides a large collection of books, ancient and Ahab, and threatened him with a similar fate. modern, you have, at one end, a number repre- Fuller ridicules the anecdote, as one invented by sented by imitation backs, bearing the titles of the Roman catholics, and perhaps he is right. lost classic works-a clever device to cover a pair At any rate, we do not need any doubtful legends of folding-doors, for such the apparent book-case to give horror to the end of the fierce and brutal really is, and to exhibit a catalogue of auctores Henry. Here lived lord Guildford Dudley and deperditi. The painting and gilding of this and the amiable lady Jane Grey, and hither came the the other rooms are remarkably fresh, though exe- dukes of Northumberland and Suffolk to press on cuted about thirty years ago, when very extensive her unwilling acceptance the fatal crown. She repairs, alterations, and improvements were made went from this calm retreat to the Tower, first as by the late duke. And here, in passing, we may a sovereign, then as a prisoner. There hangs an observe, that though Sion House is of ancient date, old picture of her; and, not far off, one of Edward having been founded by the Protector Somerset, the Sixth, as a little boy most clumsily apparelled ; no part of the original structure is apparent. The and, near it, another of the Protector. They peowalls may be the same, and the general arrange- ple the place with the shades of those departed ment not entirely altered, but Inigo Jones had ones, whose names are so intimately interwoven the remodelling of the mansion and as to its with the early history of the house. Here, too, present state, it owes much to the architectural was the residence of Henry Percy, the ninth earl of designs of Adams.
Northumberland, to whom the domain was granted We shall not enter into details relative to the in 1604, and who afterwards suffered a long im. private family apartments of the present duke, prisonment in the Tower of London for his alleged which are chiefly remarkable for their chaste ele participation in the gunpowder plot. Here, too, gance and the valuable pictures which adorn the queen Anne lived a while when princess, the man. walls. But we must pause for a while in a plain. sion being lent to her, during one of her quarrels looking corridor on the opposite side to the library, with her sister Mary, by the duke of Somerset, It is full of memorials of the house of Percy. who possessed it at the time in right of his wife, There are earls, and dukes, and other branches of the only daughter of Joceline, carl of Northum. the family, carrying you back to early times. In berland.
We must now ramble into the gardens for a the estate. The gardens, it is said, “ were inclosed moment, to breathe the balmy air and drink in by high walls before the east and west fronts, the fresh fragrance of flowers. Getting among and were laid out in a very grand manner; but, the shady walks, and by a stream which crosses being made at a time when extensive views were the park, memories of the long race of the Percys deemed inconsistent with the stately privacy thickly crowd on us with manifold associations of affected by the great, they were so situated as to English history--the memory quickening the ima deprive the house of all prospect. To remedy that gination, and the imagination supplying materials inconvenience, the Protector built a high triangular for the judgment, and the whole issuing in divers terrace in the angle between the walls of the two moralizings that should improve the heart. But gardens, and this it was that his enemies after. such old thoughts, and their attendant lessons, are wards did not scruple to call a fortification, and to 80 common and familiar that we must pass them insinuate that it was one proof, among others, of by, leaving the reader to revive and arrange and his having formed a design dangerous to the liber. follow them out in his own way. But we have ties of king and people.” What a different place reached the conservatory, which some years ago must this have been then from what it is now. would have been termed a palace of glass; now, Those old monastic or prison-like walls gave an however, that name has received a higher appropria. air of miserable dulness and seclusion; and we do tion, and the structure to which par excellence not wonder that the Protector wished to get above it belonged throws into the shade all other build-them, and enjoy the expanse of field and flood ings of this material. We are no botanists, but a about his pent-in domain. The change in those walk in a green-house has for us indescribable grounds, once shut up as within a dreary fortress, charms. In addition to the beauties of form and now open to the gaze of a thousand wayfarers, is colour which those rich exotics unfold, they have typical of a change in the state of civilization since an indescribable power over the mind in the way the sixteenth century. The present duke has his of purifying our taste, and delivering us from the lot cast in far better times than had the lordly captivity of vitiating conventionalisms in reference founder of this house. to what is beautiful and fair. We get the judg. Sion stands in the parish of Isleworth, and hard ment warped by familiarity with what is debased by the southern end is the village church. The in human art; but when the loveliness of nature structure is chiefly of red brick, hideous enough in --so fresh, so simple, so unpretending, so delicate point of architectural appearance, though said to -is revealed to us in the shape of flowers, and we be built in part after designs by sir Christopher can appreciate their unrivalled attractions, it is a Wren. No doubt the church wardens had them wonderful schooling for our minds, and breaks the altered and spoiled according to order. The stone false spell which has fallen on us in view of what tower at the west end is very venerable, the old is tawdry and garish. The sight of flowers, the gray blocks of which are richly draped with folds loving sight of them, is the best thing in the world of ivy. There are several monuments in the to educate us in a taste that is unaffected, natural, interior ; and in the register, according to Lysons, and pure. Then, as regards the palm-house and the are numerous entries of marriages and births, Victoria Regia, we might say something of them, interesting from the distinguished names to which but that their rivals in Kew Gardens opposite they relate. The union of two members of the surpass them. An obelisk, however, presented by house of Percy, or of a Cavendish with a Seymour, the Pasha of Egypt to lord Prudhoe, now duke or the birth of a Talbot, a lord Gray and Warke, of Northumberland, we must just mention, for its or an earl of Rivers, really has a sort of historical hieroglyphics are very distinct, and remind us of interest. And among the minutes in the vestry the astonishing advances made of late in the de- records, we may add some cnrious grants of licence ciphering of these signs. Nor can we omit to to certain persons, soon after the Restoration, to allude to two beautiful statnes in white marble, eat flesh in Lent. Here is one given by William one of a boy in repose which we saw as we entered, Grant, vicar of Isleworth, to Richard Downton another of a boy in action which met us as we and Thomasin his wife, “ for the recovery of their left the green-house. The one seems to exert a health, they being enforced, by age, notorious sicksort of mesmeric influence, so strongly were we ness, and weakness, to abstain from flesh." An inclined to sit down and slumber at the sight of office for granting such licences was established in that symbolic representation of repose ; the other St. Paul's.churchyard in 1663, at which period disenchants, and we felt braced up for a good walk Juxon, archbishop of Canterbury, granted one to or run on leaving the lad in stone as he stood sir Nathaniel Powell, bart., his sons and daughters, ust preparing to unloose his dog and have a and six guests, whom he should at any time invite chase.
to his table to eat flesh in Lent; provided that they At the other end of the gardens there is a ate soberly and frugally, with due grace said, and rosary, now in preparation for great improvement, privately to avoid scandal, and upon condition of where, too, experiments are making in reference giving thirteen and fourpence to the poor of the to the culture of some foreign fruits. There is, parish. also, here a summer-house furnished with cases of But we must leave Isleworth church and step stuffed birds. Not far from the rosary is a ter into our boat again, where the river towards Richrace by the water-side, and a rotunda-shaped build- mond opens upon us most invitingly. The wood ing with a boat-house beneath. Here and else- grows richer, and the view shuts in, to gain in where, all along the park which skirts the water. beauty what it loses in extent. Al is rural here, side, the extensive view is the great recommenda- till, nearing Richmond Bridge, we find ourselves tion, and it recalls, by the force of contrast, a fact amongst other objects, which will occupy our attenrelating to the Protector Somerset, when he had tion in the next paper.
decayed, or the wine made from them was detesta. THE GRAPE PLAGUE.
ble.' In 1852, the Oidiuin Tuckeri re-appeared Tax alarm inspired a few years ago by the potato France with increased and fatal energy; it crossed disease has been recently paralleled in the wine the Mediterranean to Algeria, has shown itself in growing countries of Europe, by the appearance of Syria and Asia Minor, attacked the Muscat grapes à destructive substance upon the grape, which at Malaga, injured the vines in the Balearic is. proves largely fatal to its growth. The scientific lands, utterly destroyed the vintage in Madeira, name given to this destroyer is the Oidium, and greatly injured it in the Greek islands, and de it may fairly be classed in its effects with the stroyed the currants in Zante and Cephalonia, ren. Aphis Devastator in Ireland. Nor must our read. dering them almost unfit for use, and so diminished ers imagine that this is a calamity which only the supply, that_500 gatherers did the ordinary threatens the convivial classes, for abroad, will work of 8000! But it is in France that its frightbe remembered, wine forms among the peasantry ful ravages are chiefly to be regarded as a national an important article of diet. A paper was recently calamity, where the produce of the soil in wine is read upon this interesting topic by Mr. Brocke- said to exceed 500 millions of hectolitres; twodon, F.R.s., at a meeting of the Royal Institution. fifths of the usual quantity of wine made there has We avail ourselves of a copious report of it which been destroyed, and what has been made is bad. appeared in the pages of the “ Literary Gazette," It has not touched with equal severity all the to enrich our pages with the following condensed departments. Traces of its influence have been extract from it:
seen in the Loiret, Loire-et-Cher, and Maine-et“ In the spring of 1845, a fungus on the grape Loire. The vineyards of the Medoc, in 1851, were was first observed in the hot-houses of Mr. Slater, untouched, and the cultivators laughed at the of Margate, by his very intelligent and observant existence of the Oidium ; but last year the disease gardener, Mr. Edward Tucker, whose name has showed itself everywhere in the Gironde, even to been given to it by the Rev. M. J. Berkeley, the the borders of the celebrated Medoc, and between eminent naturalist-viz., Oidium Tuckeri. It is the vineyards of the Medoc and the river at Pauillac an egg-shaped fungus, one of an immense family and at Macau, with serious injury. In the Lower of this class of destroyers, but one not before Pyrenees the vines of Jurançon were affected. known or recognised; and though it bears a close The Haute Garonne was generally attacked, and resemblance to those which are found upon the at Toulouse one proprietor, who usually sent to potato, peach, chrysanthemum, cucumber, ground. Paris 10,000 francs worth of grapes for the table, sel, etc., yet it is distinguished from all others by lost all, or nearly all, by the Oidium. The Eastern a microscopic observer, and has never yet been Pyrenees, l'Aude, l'Herault, and a great part of found upon any other plant, and when found upon Gard, were all deplorably affected, and at Frontithe grape has always been destructive. Its first gnan and Lunel the vineyards were abandoned in appearance is like a whitish mildew, showing itself despair. Thousands of labourers were thrown out principally upon the young grape when about the of employ, and the distress was awful. Wine in size of a pea. When the spore of this fungus has France is the common drink of the peasant ; upon
a settled on the young berry, it enlarges and radiates this, his bread, and some légumes, he labours : but irregularly in fine filaments, which often cover the the wine, bad as it is, has risen to double, and, in whole surface, extending with great rapidity. the countries most injured, even treble its ordinary These fix themselves by imperceptible attachments, price. In Lower Provençe and on the Isère, the which do not appear to penetrate the cuticle ; nu- vines which escaped in 1851 were seriously injured merous branches from the mycelium are unfruit in 1852. In the Burgundy district, the vines on ful; others are jointed, and rise vertically like the the Côte d'Or were little affected in the vineyards, pile of velvet; the upper joint enlarges, rounds but the trellised vines were seriously so. itself into an elliptical form, ripens, separates, and “Some persons, as M. Robineau, have supposed is carried off with the slightest motion of the air, that it was caused by insects, because occasionally to find another grape upon which it can be deve- they had been found on diseased vines; but the loped. Warmth and moisture favour its rapid fruc- idea is now utterly rejected, for not the slightest tification ; a succession of spores rise from the appearance of disease precedes the fungus, which same branch ; and often two, three, or four ripen creeps over the epidermis, but does not enter its and disperse almost at the same time. Its effect tissues. It envelops the grape, absorbs the juices upon the grape is to exhaust the juices of the cuticle, of the superficial cells, and stops the growth of the which ceases to expand with the pulp of the fruit; cuticle. The pulp expands within the fruit, bursts it then bursts, dries up, and is utterly destroyed. longitudinally, its juices are lost, and it dries up.
“ This fatal disease has returned with increased In an early stage of the disease the fungus may be virulence in each succeeding year. In 1847, the wiped off, and the fruit will come to maturity. spores of this Oidium reached France, and were The Oidium never matures on decayed vegetable found in the forcing-houses of Versailles and other substances; it lives and fructifies only on living places near Paris. The disease soon reached tissues. The poor peasant of the Bouches du the trellised vines, and destroyed the grapes out Rhône believes that the cause is bad air; but at of doors in the neighbourhood, and continued to Genoa, Grenoble, Lyons, Dijon, and Strasbourg, extend from place to place; but, until 1850, it was the people attribute it to gas-lights! and the chiefly observed in vineries, which lost from this vapour of locomotives !! and think that such invencause, season after season, the whole of their crops. tions are infernal; and many works are published Unhappily, in 1851, it was found to have extended with such absurd imputations, and recommending to the south and south-east of France and Italy, preventives and remedies just as wise. By far the and the grapes were so affected that they either ablest work upon this important subject is by M.
Louis Leclerc, who, eminent as a man of science, A HINT TO THE DISCONTENTED.
In the course of Mr. Brockedon's paper several and I had not placed myself under its shade five
WORTH IMITATING. dame Cliquốt, of Rheims, lost 400,000 out of her ABOUT this time colonel Gardener entered upon stock for that season of 1,600,000 bottles. Further that methodical manner of living which he pursued destruction was checked by obtaining from Paris through so many succeeding years of his life, and ten or twelve wagon-loads of ice, which, strewn in I believe, generally, so far as the broken state of the caves, lowered their temperature. When the his health would allow it, in his latter days to the wine is thus stacked, the merchants visit the caves very end of it. He used constantly to rise at four to buy, and it is scarcely recommended to their in the morning, and to spend his time till six in notice, unless the breakage can be shown to be not the secret exercises of devotion, reading, meditaless than ten per cent. It is this loss, and the cost tion, and prayer; in which latter he contracted' of labour in preparing, that enhances so much the such a fervency of spirit as I believe few men value of the wine of Champagne. The condition living ever obtained. This certainly tended very of the wine in the bottle can be easily ascertained much to strengthen that firm faith in God, and by a simple means. A fine hollow needle can be reverent, animating sense of his presence, for which thrust through the cork, and a taste obtained from he was so eminently remarkable, and which carried the pressure within, through the tube. On with him through the trials and services of life with drawing the circular needle, the elasticity of the such steadiness and activity; for he, indeed, endured cork closes the puncture. Of the quantity of and acted as always seeing Him who is invisible. champagne made it is difficult to obtain accurate if at any time he was obliged to go out before six information ; 50,000,000 bottles would be a low in the morning, he rose proportionably sooner. ; so estimate for the genuine product of Champagne; that when a journey, or a march, has required him but the demand for wines that effervesce is so to be on horseback by four, he would be at his degreat, that they are now supplied from the vineyards votions at farthest by two. He likewise secured of St. Perey, Hermitage, Rhine, Moselle, Burgundy, time for retirement in an evening; and that he Bordeaux--in fact, from every wine district in might have it the more at command, and be the which they choose to make it by sweetening and more fit to use it properly, as well as the better treating it as in Champagne. But this is not the able to rise early the next morning, he generally only mode of making champagne, even with genuine went to bed about ten; and, during the time I was French wine. Very large quantities are made in acquainted with him, he seldom ate any supper but Paris and elsewhere; in that city there are nume- a mouthful of bread with one glass of wine. In rous establishments for such manufacture, one consequence of this, as well as of his admirably house alone sending out 1,000,000 bottles a year. good constitution and the long habit he had formThey sweeten the light common white wines of ed, he required less sleep than most persons I have France, and then impregnate them with carbonic known; and I doubt not but his uncommon proacid gas by means of a pneumatic apparatus, and gress in piety was in a great measure owing to bottle, them as in Champagne, while effervescent." | these resolute habits of self-denial - Doddridge.