The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 19, No. 546, May 12, 1832 online

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VOL. 19, NO. 546.] SATURDAY, MAY 12, 1832. [PRICE 2d.

* * * * *


[Illustration: ST. PANCRAS (OLD) CHURCH.]

This humble village fane is situated to the north of London, somewhat
more than a mile from Holborn Bars. Persons unacquainted with the site,
may hitherto have considered it as part and parcel of this vast
metropolis: but, lo! here it stands amidst much of its primitive,
peaceful rusticity.

Pancras is still, by courtesy, called a _village_, though its charms may
be of the _rus-in-urbe_ description. It derives its name from the saint
to whom the church is dedicated:[1] it was called St. Pancras when the
Survey of Domesday was taken. The parish is of great extent. Mr. Lysons
states it at 2,700 acres of land, including the site of buildings. It is
bounded on the north by Islington, Hornsey, and Finchley; and on the
west by Hampstead and Marybone. On the south it meets the parishes of
St. Giles's in the Fields, St. George the Martyr, St. George,
Bloomsbury, and St. Andrew's, Holborn.[2] On the east it is bounded by
St. James's, Clerkenwell. Kentish Town, part of Highgate, Camden Town,
and Somer's Town,[3] are comprised within this parish as hamlets. Mr.
Lysons supposes it to have included the prebendal manor of Kentish
Town,[4] or Cantelows, which now constitutes a stall in St. Paul's
Cathedral. Among the prebendaries have been men eminent for their
learning and piety: as Lancelot Andrews, bishop of Winchester, Dr.
Sherlock, Archdeacon Paley, and the Rev. William Beloe, B.D. well known
by his translation of Herodotus.

[1] St. Pancras was a young Phrygian nobleman, who suffered
death under the Emperor Dioclesian, for his zealous adherence to
the Christian faith.

[2] Lysons's Environs, 4to. vol. ii. part ii.

[3] The parish extends in this direction to the foot of Gray's
Inn Lane, and includes part of a house in Queen's Square.

[4] Anciently Kentistonne, where William Bruges, Garter King at
Arms in the reign of Henry V. had a country-house, at which he
entertained the emperor Sigismund.

It would occupy too much space to detail the progressive increase of
this district. When a visitation of the church was made in the year
1251, there were only forty houses in the parish. The desolate situation
of the village in the latter part of the sixteenth century is
emphatically described by Norden, in his _Speculum Britanniæ_. After
noticing the solitary condition of the church, he says, "yet about this
structure have bin manie buildings now decaied, leaving poore Pancras
without companie or comfort." In some manuscription additions to his
work, the same writer has the following observations: - "Although this
place be, as it were, forsaken of all; and true men seldom frequent the
same, but upon devyne occasions; yet it is visyted by thieves, who
assemble there not to pray, but to wait for praye; and manie fell into
their handes, clothed, that are glad when they are escaped naked. Walk
not there too late." Newcourt, whose work was published in 1700, says
that houses had been built near the church. The first important increase
of the parish took place in the neighbourhood of Tottenham Court Road.

"Pancras Church," says Norden, "standeth all alone, as utterly forsaken,
old and wether-beten, which, for the antiquity thereof, it is thought
not to yield to Paules in London." It is of rude Gothic architecture,
built of stones and flints, which are now covered with plaster. Mr.
Lysons says, "It is certainly not older than the fourteenth century,
perhaps in Norden's time it had the appearance of great decay; the same
building, nevertheless, repaired from time to time, still remains; looks
no longer 'old and wether-beten,' and may still exist perhaps to be
spoken of by some antiquary of a future century. It is a very small
structure, consisting only of a nave and chancel; at the west end is a
low tower, with a kind of dome."[5] Mr. Lysons speaks of the
disproportionate size of the church to the population of the parish; but
since his time another church has been erected, the splendour and size
of which in every respect accord with the increased wealth and numbers
of the parish.

[5] The visitation of the church in the year 1251, mentions a
very small tower, a good slope font, and a small marble stone
ornamented with copper to carry the _Pax_.

The church and churchyard of Pancras have long been noted as the
burial-place of such Roman Catholics as die in London and its
vicinity.[6] Many of the tombs exhibit a cross, and the initials R.I.P.
(_Requiescat in pace_), which initials, or others analogous to them, are
always used by the Catholics on their sepulchral monuments. Mr. Lysons
heard it assigned by some of that persuasion, as a reason for this
preference to Pancras as a burial-place, that masses were formerly said
in a church in the south of France, dedicated to the same saint, for the
souls of the deceased interred at St. Pancras in England. After the
French revolution, a great number of ecclesiastics and other refugees,
some of them of high rank, were buried in this churchyard; and in 1811,
Mr. Lysons observed that probably about 30 of the French clergy had on
an average been buried at Pancras for some years past: in 1801 there
were 41, and in 1802, 32. Mr. Lysons's explanation of this preference to
Pancras by the Catholics is, however, disputed by the author of
_Ecclesiastical Topography_, who observes that a reason more generally
given is, that "Pancras was the last church in England where mass was
performed after the Reformation."

[6] Strype, in his additions to Stowe, says, the Roman Catholics
have of late _effected_ to be buried at this place.

In the chancel are monuments of Daniel Clarke, Esq. who had been
master-cook to Queen Elizabeth; and of Cooper the artist, whose style
approached so near to that of Vandyke, that he has been called Vandyke
in miniature: he taught the author of Hudibras to paint; his wife was
sister to Pope's mother.

In the churchyard are the tombs of Anthony Woodhead, 1678, who was in
his day, the great champion of the Roman Catholic religion, and was
reputed to have written the Whole Duty of Man; Lady Slingsby, whose name
occurs as an actress in Dryden and Lee's plays, from 1681 to 1689;
Jeremy Collier, 1726, the pertinacious non-juror, who repressed the
immoralities of the stage; Ned Ward, author of the London Spy, 1731;
Leoni, the architect, 1746; Lady Henrietta, wife of Beard, the vocalist,
1753; Van Bleeck, the portrait-painter; Ravenet, the engraver, 1764;
Mazzinghi, 1775, leader of the band at Marylebone Gardens, and father of
Mazzinghi, the celebrated composer; Henry and Robert Rackett, Pope's
nephews; Woollett, the engraver, 1785, to whose memory a monument has
been placed in the cloisters of Westminster Abbey; Baron de Wenzel, the
celebrated oculist, 1790; Mary Wollestonecraft Godwin, author of a
Vindication of the Rights of Woman, 1797; the Rev. Arthur O'Leary, or
Father O'Leary, the amiable Franciscan friar, 1802; Paoli, the patriotic
Corsican, 1807; Walker editor of the Pronouncing Dictionary; the
Chevalier d'Eon, 1810, of epicene notoriety; and Packer, the comedian,
1806, who is said to have performed 4,852 times, besides walking in
processions; Edwards, professor of Perspective, 1806; Scheemakers, the
statuary, 1808.

In the _Beauties of England and Wales_, it is stated that 23 acres of
land belong to the church; and the great increase of buildings renders
these of considerable value; though it is not known to whom the church
is indebted for this possession.

* * * * *



(_For the Mirror._)

Through oak-woods green,
A silver sheen,
Sweet moon, from thee
Afforded me
A tranquil joy,
Me, _then_, a happy boy.
Still makes thy light
My window bright,
But can no more
Lost peace restore:
My brow is shaded,
My cheek with weeping faded.
Thy beams, O moon,
Will glitter soon,
As softly clear,
Upon my bier:
For soon, earth must
Conceal in youth my dust.


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror._)

These remains of ancient art are destined to be removed to Europe.[7]
The palace of Cleopatra was built upon the walls facing the port of
Alexandria, Egypt, having a gallery on the outside, supported by several
fine columns. Towards the eastern part of the palace are two obelisks,
vulgarly called _Cleopatra's Needles_. They are of Thebaic stone, and
covered with hieroglyphics; one is overturned, broken, and lying under
the sand; the other is on its pedestal. These two obelisks, each of them
of a single stone, are about sixty feet high, by seven feet square at
the base. The Egyptian priests called these obelisks the sun's fingers,
because they served as stiles or gnomons to mark the hours on the
ground. In the first ages of the world they were made use of to transmit
to posterity the principal precepts of philosophy, which were engraven
on them in hieroglyphics.

"Between the statues, _Obelisks_ were placed:
And the learned walls with _hieroglyphics_ grac'd.

In after ages they were used to immortalize the actions of heroes, and
the memory of persons beloved.

[7] One is stated to be on its way to England; our parliament
has voted 10,000_l_ to defray the expense. The other needle is
destined for France.

The first obelisk we know of was that raised by Rameses, King of Egypt,
in the time of the Trojan war. Augustus erected an obelisk at Rome, in
the Campus Martius, which served to mark the hours on an horizontal
dial, drawn on the pavement. This obelisk was brought from Egypt, and
was said to have been formed by Sesostris, near a thousand years before
Christ. It was used by Manlius for the same purpose for which it was
originally destined, namely, to measure the height of the sun.


* * * * *



(_For the Mirror._)

If death's keen anguish thou would'st charm
Ere speeds his fatal dart,
Come, place thine hand - while yet 'tis warm,
Upon my breaking heart.

And though remorse - thou may'st not feel
When its last throb is o'er,
Thou'lt say - "that heart which lov'd so well,
Shall passion feel no more."

E'en love for thee forsakes my soul -
Thy work, relentless see,
Near as I am life's destin'd gaol,
I'm frozen - less than thee.

Yet take this heart - I ne'er had more
To give thee in thy need:
Search well - for at its inmost core,
Thy pardon thou may'st read.


* * * * *


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror._)

A gentleman residing in the vicinity of Dublin, found, notwithstanding
the protection of a thick, and thorny hedge, that great depredations
were committed on his garden and paddocks; so he inclosed them with a
high, strong wall. As he kept cows, and had more milk than was
sufficient for his family, he distributed the overplus amongst his poor
neighbours. One day, inspecting in person, this distribution, he saw a
woman attending with her pails, who, he was tolerably certain did not
require such assistance. "You, here! my good friend," said he, "I
thought you kept a cow?"

"Ay, plase yer honour's honour, and _two_ it was that I _once_ kept, the

"_Once_, why don't you keep them now?"

"Ough! 'tis yeaself must answer that question, for why? the bastes did
well enough afore your rav'rence run up that bit o' wall round your
fields, seein' the cows lived off your grass; but sorra for me now, I've
sold 'em both, by rason I couldn't _keep_ 'em no longer."

An English gentleman, on a tour in Ireland, was beset at a fine
waterfall by numerous beggars; one woman was particularly clamorous for
relief, but Mr. R. instructed by his guide, said to her, "My good
friend, you cannot possibly want relief, as you keep several cows, and
have a very profitable farm; indeed I cannot bestow my charity upon
you." The woman, looking sulky, and _detected_, immediately pointed to
another, exclaiming, "Then give to _her_, for she's got _nothing_!" The
stranger in Dublin is particularly requested to send all beggars to an
institution in Copper Alley, for their relief. Being once much
importuned by an old man for money, we desired him to go to this place.
"I can't," said he.

"Why not?"

"Becase 'tis a bad place for the poor."

"How so? don't they give you anything to eat?"

"Ah, yes, yes, but the thing is, my jewel, they wont by no manes give a
poor body _anything to drink_." The intelligent reader will not be at a
loss to translate the complaint of thirsty Pat.

* * * * *


During the late French Revolution, one of the royalist soldiers having
his horse shot under him by a pupil of the Polytechnic School, and
finding when thus brought down, that he could not regain his feet and
resume a posture of defence, but was entirely at the mercy of his
ferocious young adversary, he immediately surrendered his sword,
exclaiming, "I am your prisoner, and entreat of you mercy and life." To
which the _generous_ and _heroic_ youth replied, "No prisoners, no
mercy!" and taking from his pocket a pike-head or some similar rough
weapon, deliberately drove it into the unfortunate soldier's heart!

* * * * *


A nobleman being, it is said, some years since, in the shop of a
celebrated London shoemaker, saw, pass through it, a very handsome young
woman, "Who is that fine girl?" said he.

"My daughter," replied the _cord-wainer_, "with sixty thousand pounds at
your lordship's service."

* * * * *


Literary topics came under discussion one evening in a small social
circle, of which the writer made one, and particularly the
autobiographical works, and personal memoirs, now so much in vogue. A
gentleman then stated, that having seen much of the world, he thought he
must follow the fashion, and one day favour it with his own life and
adventures. Numerous ladies were to figure in his book, which was, in
fact, as he modestly gave the present company to understand, to be a
complete chronicle of the flirtations and conquests of himself, and male
allies, with letters, portraits, &c. and _names_ in full. "But,"
remarked a lady, humouring the jest, "if you _do_ render your book so
very personal, are you not afraid of the consequences?"

"Not at all," replied the embryo author very gravely, "for though I
shall enjoy the remarks of the world, upon my _autobiography_, they
cannot affect me, as it will of course be a _posthumous work_."

* * * * *


During the disastrous fire of the Kent East Indiaman, a lady on board
exhibited a very singular instance of _sang froid_ and presence of mind.
Being in one of the cabins, with a large, helpless, despairing, and of
course, most troublesome party, chiefly of her own sex, "all hands" of
the other being "turned up," we presume, to check the advances of the
devouring element, she proposed, by way of keeping them quiet, _to make
tea for them_, and we believe her proposal was accepted, and had the
desired effect.

_Great Marlow, Bucks_.


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

Demosthenes to be the more removed from noise, and less subject to
distraction, caused a small chamber to be made under ground, in which he
shut himself up sometimes for whole months, shaving half his head and
only half his face, that he might not be in a condition to go abroad. It
was there, by the light of a small lamp, he composed his admirable
Orations, which were said by those who envied him, to smell of the oil,
to imply that they were too elaborate. He rose very early, and used to
say, that he was sorry when any workman was at his business before him.
He copied Thucydides' history eight times with his own hand, in order to
render the style of that great man familiar to him.

Adrian Turnebus, a French critic, was so indefatigable in his study,
that it was said of him, as it was of Budaeus, that he spent some hours
in study even on the day he was married.

Frederick Morel had so strong an attachment to study, that when he was
informed of his wife's being at the point of death, he would not lay
down his pen, till he had finished what he was upon, and when she was
dead, as she was before they could prevail on him to stir, he was only
heard to reply coldly, "I am very sorry, she was a good woman."

Sir Isaac Newton, when he had any mathematical problems or solutions in
his mind, would never quit the subject on any account; dinner was often
known to be three hours ready for him before he could be brought to
table. His man often said, when he was getting up in the morning, and
began to dress, he would, with one leg in his breeches, sit down again
on the bed, and remain there for hours before he got his clothes on.

Mr. Abraham Sharp, the astronomer, through his love of study, was very
irregular as to his meals, which he frequently took in the following
manner: a little square hole, something like a window, made a
communication between the room where he usually studied, and another
chamber in the house, where a servant could enter, and before this hole
he had contrived a sliding board, the servant always placing his
victuals in the hole, without speaking a word or making the least noise,
and when he had leisure he visited it to see what it contained, and to
satisfy his hunger or thirst. But it often happened that the breakfast,
the dinner, and the supper remained untouched by him, so deeply was he
engaged in his calculations and solemn musings. At one time after his
provisions had been neglected for a long season, his family became
uneasy, and resolved to break in upon his retirement; he complained, but
with great mildness, that they had disconcerted his thoughts in a chain
of calculations which had cost him intense application for three days
successively. On an old oak table, where for a long course of years he
used to write, cavities might easily be perceived, worn by the perpetual
rubbing of his arms and elbows.[8]


[8] Mr. Colton used to say that he wrote his treasurable,
"Lacon: or, many things in a few words," upon a small, rickety
deal table. We perceive from Galignani's _Messenger_, that Mr.
Colton put an end to his existence, a few days since, at
Fontainbleau, it is stated in consequence of the dread of a
surgical operation which it had become necessary that he should

* * * * *


* * * * *


The title of Lord Mulgrave's clever novel is sufficiently explained by
the hero, Lord Castleton, a man of high refinement, marrying an
unsophisticated, uneducated peasant girl. The scenes and incidents of
her introduction into the fashionable world are replete with humour, yet
true to the life. Thus, how naturally are her new Ladyship's
embarrassments told: -

"There were some points on which she would even have endeavoured to
extract knowledge from the servants; but dreading, from her former
habits, nothing so much as too great a familiarity in this respect,
Castleton had made it one of his first desires to her, that she would
confine her communications with them, to asking for what she wanted. To
this, as to every other desire of his, she yielded, as far as she could,
implicit obedience; but it was often a great exertion on her part to do
so. Of her own maid she had felt from the first a considerable awe; and
to such a degree did this continue, that she could not conceive any
fatigue from labour equal to the burthen of her assistance. Being
naturally of a disposition both active and obliging, it was quite new to
her to have any thing done for her which she could do for herself. For
some time she had as great a horror of touching a bell-rope, as others
have in touching the string of a shower-bath; and when services were
obtruded on her by the domestics as a matter of course, she had much
difficulty in checking the exuberance of her gratitude.

"At home, Big Betsey, mentioned before as the maid of all work, never
considered as any part of her multitudinous duties the waiting on Miss
Lucy, who she not only said 'mought moind herself,' but sometimes called
to her, almost authoritatively, 'to lend a hauping haund.' It was,
probably, in consequence of the habit thus engendered, that Lady
Castleton was one day caught 'lending a helping hand' to an over-loaded
under laundry-maid, who had been sent by her superior with a
wicker-bound snowy freight of her Ladyship's own superfine linen. But of
all the irksome feelings caused by Lucy's new position, there was none
from which she suffered more, than _waiting_ to be _waited on_. And it
was hinted in the hall, that when my Lord was not in the room, my Lady
got up to help herself to what she wanted from the sideboard!! And it
was whispered in the female conclave of the housekeeper's room, that her
Lady-ship seemed even to like to - lace her own stays!!"

Again, after Lady Castleton receiving a visit from a ton-ish family, his
Lordship asks: -

And did they make many inquiries of you? ask many questions?"

"Oh, such a many!"

"So many, dearest love, you mean to say."

"Well, so I do, thank you; and then the mamma asked me, as she had never
seen me before, if I had not been much abroad; and I said, never at all
till I married; and then she said, 'What! had I been to Paris since?'
and I find she meant foreign parts by abroad. And she told me that we
ought to go to London soon; that the season was advanced, and that the
Pasta would come out soon this spring. What is the Pasta - a plant?"

"A plant! no, love. Pasta is a singer's name, you could not be expected
to know that; but I hope you didn't say any thing to show them your

"Oh, no; you told me, whenever I was completely puzzled, that silence
was best; so I said nothing. Pasta's the name of a singer, then! Oh,
that accounts, for a moment after she the mamma said, that her daughter
Arabella sang delightfully, and asked me if I would sing with her; so I
said no, I'd much rather listen. That was right, warn't it? You see I
knew you'd ask me all about it, so I recollected it for you. Arabella
then asked me if I would accompany her? so I said, Wherever she
liked, - where did she want to go? But, I suppose, she altered her mind,
for she sat down to the grand instrument you had brought here for me to
begin my lessons upon; and then she sang such an extraordinary song - all
coming from her throat. And the sister asked me if I understood German?
and I answered, No, nor French neither."

"That was an unnecessary addition, my love."

"Well, so it was. Then the youngest sister explained to me, that it was
a song a Swiss peasant girl sang whilst she was milking her cow; and I
said that must be very difficult, to sing while milking a cow. And then
the mamma asked how I knew; and I said I had _tried_ very _often_."

"How could you, dear Lucy, volunteer such an avowal?"

"I thought you would be afraid of that; but it all did very well, for
the mother said I was so amusing, had so much natural wit, and they all
tried to persuade me I had said something clever."

"Well, go on - and what then?"

"And then the lady took me aside, and began saying so much in praise of
you; and when she once got me on that subject, I was ready and glib
enough, I warrant you. But somehow, though I then found it so much
easier to speak, I find it more difficult to recollect exactly what I
said. Is not that strange? And then she said that my happiness would
excite so much envy in the great world; that you had been admired,
courted, nay, even loved by rich, noble, clever ladies. Why was all
this? and how could you ever think to leave all these, to seek out from
her quiet home your poor little Lucy?"

"Oh, that's a story of by-gone days. These were follies of my youth,

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Online LibraryVariousThe Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 19, No. 546, May 12, 1832 → online text (page 1 of 3)