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Full text of "Reminiscences of an old Bohemian"

REMINISCENCES OF AN OLD BOHEMIAN 



" What is Man's Life ? 
Suff'ring and Strife, 

Sighs, Sobs, and Tears; 
A Jot of Joy a Sea of Sorrow ; 

A dark ' To-day,' beset with Fears 
Of darker still ' To-morrow.' " 

Infelia 



What is Man's Life on Earth ? 
All Peace and Joy and Mirth ; 

Of Pleasures full, with Troubles light ; 
All Gladness, Smiles, and Laughter ; 

A happy < Here,' with Promise bright 
Of happier still ' Hereafter.' " 

Felix. 

IN MEDIO TUTISSIMUS. 




J 



B 

S 



REMINISCENCES 



OF 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN 



Senex Loquax OLD AGE is GARRULOUS 



A NEW EDITION 



LONDON 
TINSLEY BROTHERS, 8, CATHERINE ST., STRAND 

1883 



CHABLBS DICKBWS AND BVAN8, 
CRYSTAL PALACE PRESS. 



3En0mbtb 



TO 



OCTAVIAN BLEWITT, Esq., 

SECRETARY OP THE 

ROYAL LITERARY FUND 

(Ac prcecipud pluribus pater et mihi) 



AS A FEEBLE MABK OF THE AUTHOR'S HEARTFELT GRATITUDE TO 
THE MAX, AND ADMIRATION OF THE SCHOLAR 



PREFACE. 



" BUT the book is not complete. Where is your Preface 1 " 

It was some twenty-odd years ago, in an action brought 
by me against a well-known London publisher, and tried at 
Guildhall, that defendant's Counsel (now Mr. Baron Huddle- 
ston) put this question to me with an air of triumph, as if he 
felt quite sure he had me there, and I was out of Court. 

However, I quietly replied that I did not hold with prefaces, 
not deeming them either useful or ornamental, and that I had 
never agreed to supply a preface to the book then before the 
Court. 

The Judge the then Mr. Justice Blackburne, a most sound 
and profound legist, and truly the most glorious gift ever 
presented to the British Bench by the late Lord Campbell 
ruled that a preface could not properly be held to constitute an 
indispensable or essential part of a literary production. So the 
case was decided in my favour. 

Well, why this Exordium then, if there is no need of a 
Preface "? Why, simply that it affords me a most welcome and 
fitting opening for expressing in a few brief words my sincerest 
heartfelt thanks to the kind reviewers who have so indulgently 
noticed the Keminiscences of my life. Their benevolent appre- 
ciation of my humble efforts has shed brightest rays of comfort 
and joy upon the declining days of 

THE OLD BOHEMIAN. 

March, 1883. 



EEMINISCENCES 



OF 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 



"i WRITE WHAT'S UPPERMOST WITHOUT DELAY." 






EEMINISCENCES, simply reminiscences a few leaves culled from a 
long life's ledger, dipping here and there, almost at random, and 
without regard to chronological order not an ambitious attempt 
at an autobiography, nor, indeed, least of all, " confessions," after 
the manner of Jean Jacques. 

Of an old Bohemian. 

Old yes ! Though I have for many long years fought hard 
against the admission, I make it here at once, fully and hand- 
somely, in homage to truth and fact. Yes, I am an old man old 
in years, older still in bitter experience and in suffering. 

One's age, like all else in this world, is relative, and not to be 
reckoned by the mere tale of years one has lived; but, like 
military service in time of war, to be computed rather by the 
number of campaigns one has passed through in the incessant 
hard struggle against adversity that falls to the share of most 
mortals. 

There are aged men of barely thirty summers yet, as there are 
sprightly evergreens of more than seventy winters. Of some it 
may be said that they have hardly ever been young ; of others, 
that they seem never to grow old. I may, in a certain sense, 
claim to belong almost equally to both classes. Early misfortunes, 
losses, and crosses, had, ere yet my spring was fairly on, graven 
so many lines in my face, and ploughed so many furrows in my 
brow, that the winter of my life now finds but little room for 
additions. 

B 



2 REMINISCENCES OF 

A Bohemian yes, in the fullest sense of the term. A Bohemian 
of the true old school, which is now fast dying out the greater 
the pity, perhaps. 

Of Bohemianism it may be said, as of greatness, that some 
men are born to it, some achieve it, and some have it thrust upon 
them. Now, as for me, I may truly aver that, though not exactly 
born to Bohemianism in the common acceptation of the term as 
applied in literary and artistic circles, yet I took to it naturally 
and kindly when circumstances thrust it upon me, and I found it, 
accordingly, a facile and pleasing task to achieve it. 

It may savour of conceit in an obscure old man to wish to 
place the reminiscences of his humble life on record. However, 
as the most learned sage may find something new to him in the 
pages of a first spelling-book, even so may there be found some- 
thing not altogether uninteresting in the plain narrative of a 
chequered career, albeit that he who tells the tale has all along 
travelled through the world's lowlands. Let this plead my excuse. 

It is my earnest wish to be strictly truthful in narrating these 
reminiscences of my life, to the best of my recollection and belief ; 
and I will endeavour to tell them in the simplest and chattiest 
way. 

I have always been credited with an excellent memory ; I am 
afraid, however, upon very insufficient and deceptive grounds. I 
only know that I have absolutely forgotten at least ten times as 
much as I can still, most imperfectly, remember. I have never 
kept a diary, nor have I ever noted down a single event in my 
life.;, and, with rare exceptions, I have hardly ever preserved a 
letter. 

Memory is a capricious faculty precocious and of rapid 
development in |ome, of tardy birth and slow growth in others ; 
retentive* or the reverse; imaginative and inventive in most 
people, and in a great many tenacious or treacherous, as occasion 
may require or personal interest dictate. 

* A very dear friend of mine is gifted with the most tenaciously 
retentive memory. He remembers events, conversations, letters, etc., to 
the minutest details, no matter after what lapse of time. I once main- 
tained in his presence, in my paradoxical way, that a man had an 
indefeasible claim to the fullest liberty of action, and that even an in- 
tending suicide ought not to be interfered with, but should be permitted 
to do with himself as he listed. Many long years after I was striving 
might and main to persuade a slightly inebriate Bohemian a right good 
fellow in the main to let me take him home, telling him at last that his 
obstinate refusal to accept my friendly counsel and help was tantamount 
to deliberately wilful constructive suicide, which no true friend could 
stand idly by seeing perpetrated in his very presence. My friend with 
the retentive memory stood by at the time, with a pleasant smile on his 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 3 

By way of illustration : Some years ago there was a witness 
heard, in an English Equity Court, in a case of disputed posses- 
sion and title, who boldly laid claim to the most precocious and 
prodigious memory on record. He was a respectable gentleman, 
a J.P., whose bare word would before a bench of magistrates have 
outweighed the sworn testimony of twenty common people. Well, 
this gentleman remembered, verbatim and literatim, long and 
tortuous discussions on points of genealogy, which he stated on 
oath he had overheard at the tender age of two!years and a half. 
Sad to relate, Sir Eichard Malins, made sceptical, no doubt, by 
seeing overmuch of the dark side of human nature, bluntly 
rejected this witness's evidence as altogether unworthy of belief. 

So I may, perhaps, claim credence when I own that the early 
impressions of my babyhood are simply a blank. 

I have reason to believe, however, upon trustworthy hearsay 
evidence, that I was born at Trois-Rivieres, in Lower Canada, a 
British subject, though of foreign, slightly composite, extraction, 
with a strange mixture of Italian, French, German, and Sarmatian 
blood in my veins. 

The first event in my life that made a more lasting impression 
on my infantile mind, was a disagreement with my French nurse, 
in which an attempted demonstration of independence on my part, 
supported by my little fists, brought upon my frail frame a very 
hailstorm of cuffs, interspersed with painful pinches. It was my 
first introduction to conscious physical and mental suffering. It 
laid in me the foundation of that uncompromising hatred of all 
tyranny and arbitrary rule which has clung to me through life 
perhaps also of that stiff-necked self-willedness, in the earlier 
period of my career euphemistically qualified by me as sturdy 
independence of character which has but too often barred or 
marred my advancement in life. 

Nurse coaxed me after, stuffing me with lollipops; and at 
night, before my parents she called me the sweetest little cherub. 
I have since then, in my way through the world, had to suffer 
many repetitions of this first infantile experience of mine always 
barring the coaxing and the lollipops after. 

This happened in New York ; I was in my fifth year then. Ifc 
was about three months as I learnt at a much later period of my 
life, of course before the outbreak of the right-of-search war 

face. " Well, what of that, old boy ? " he said. " Don't you remember 
such and such a time when you were preaching a very different doctrine ? " 
And he repeated exactly what I had said fifteen years before. I had 
forgotten it until brought back to my recollection. He quoted it 
verbatim. And I and many others have known him over and over 
again to perform similar feats. 

B 2 



4 REMINISCENCES OF 

between America and England, in which the latter country had 
magnanimously given way to American clamour too late, 
however, the Americans pretended, to prevent hostilities. We 
were passing through the Empire City on our way to the old 
Continent, where my parents' presence was required by important 
business in connection with my maternal grandfather's recent 
death. This business involved also a most remarkable errand, to 
wit, to try to get a pound of butter out of a dog's mouth said 
dog being no less an animal than the Almighty Czar of all the 
Russias and all the Eussians, who, it would appear, had seized in 
his in satiate imperial maw certain property to which my mother 
poor innocent ! thought she had an indefeasible claim. Had the 
friendship between Napoleon and Alexander continued, my father 
might have brought to bear some influence upon the latter ; but 
as the Franco-Russian war was raging when we reached Europe, 
that influence would certainly have told the other way. The war 
also compelled a delay of many months in the initiatory pro- 
ceedings, which in its turn made all subsequent steps almost 
hopelessly difficult. 

This was the beginning of my wanderings. I am afraid I 
must have been born with a mercurial temperament and a restless 
disposition. Still, had we but stayed in Canada, I might have 
grown more settled in time. Might-have-beens are fruitless 
speculations, however. 

On our trip across the Atlantic I had to swallow, or, more 
correctly speaking, the reverse, the first extensive dose of sea- 
sickness, which most objectionable ailment has affectionately 
attended me ever since in all my maritime travels, making even 
a run across the Channel a formidable and painful undertaking to 
me, yet the dread of which has never had sufficient power over me 
to lessen my inborn restlessness and passion for roving. It was 
this restlessness that gained me, at a very early period of my life, 
the nickname of the "Wandering Jew." 

A wanderer I have been through life, and a wanderer I am 
likely to remain until I reach the great universal junction where 
all wayfarers on earth have to change for the next stage on the 
never-ending road to the threshold of eternity. 

Of the events of the next four years of my life I have only a 
most hazy recollection, save for one brief glimpse of fairyland, 
which, though but a passing, fantastic, and superlatively crazy 
dream, left a deeper and more lasting impression upon my young 
heart and mind. 

All I can dimly discern in my mind's eye is a rapid succession 
of dissolving views of scenes and places we passed through on our 
apparently ceaseless journeyings through France, the British 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 5 

Isles, and all over the Continent, including the dreary regions of 
Poland and Russia, until we fixed at last, though even then at 
first for a time only, upon a local habitation at Linden, which now 
almost forms part of the city of Hanover. 

Here my father bought a charming country-house, with 
extensive orchard and garden ; and here we had the good luck to 
engage as cook an accomplished blue ribbon, who had been high- 
soundingly christened Thusnelda Irma, but to whom my mother 
gave the plain and much more prosaic name Lise. Her I remember 
well. I was just about seven when she came to us, and she had 
been with us for close upon four years when she died. She had 
few foibles very few indeed. She was free even from the failing 
so common among great cooks an inordinate love for moistening 
the clay, to wit and she did not take snuff a most valuable 
negative virtue in a cook, which I learned to appreciate in later 
years, when circumstances brought me into familiar contact with 
some of the grandest adepts in the coquinarian art, craft, and 
mystery, who did take snuff, and would not mind a bit letting 
the effects drop into the dainty dishes their hands were deftly 
mixing and preparing. Our Lise possessed the four cardinal 
virtues of a good cook, to wit, an intelligent knowledge of the art, 
untiring patience, wise economy, and scrupulous cleanliness. 

One of her very few foibles and failings was that she would 
not take kindly to the name of Lise, bestowed upon her by 
mother. 

Now in all things concerning the sex I have, from earliest 
boyhood, cultivated a certain chivalrous feeling. So when, with 
the acuteness of a sharp young mind, I discovered that Thusnelda 
and Irma sounded more grateful to cook's ears than Lise, I made it 
a point to invariably address her by either or both grand names ; 
and here, indeed, it was brilliantly shown that virtue is its own 
reward, for with a liberal heart and a free hand would Thusnelda 
Irma dispense to her "little gentleman," as she was wont to 
fondly call me no end of tit-bits, dainties, and sops-in-the-pan, 
which Lise would most probably have been rather more chary of. 

Not alone this : but quite against the traditional rooted 
dislike of culinary artists to trespassers on their domain who 
would pry into their arcana, she took a positive delight in in- 
structing me (ludendo) in her noble art. I may as well state here, 
at once, that I have, from my earliest boyhood, been possessed by 
a passion for " cooking " in all its branches. I verily believe 
Nature intended- me for a great cook, and that it was adverse 
fortune alone that spoilt my glorious chance of developing into an 
illustrious chef, a beneficent autocrat of the kitchen. 

Be this as it m&y, the dear old woman loved to inculcate in my 



6 REMINISCENCES OF 

receptive young mind the true nature of the processes of boiling., 
roasting, frying, and baking, and the scientific principles severally 
underlying them, to reveal to me the composition and the com- 
pounding, and the " doing " and dishing of her most recondite 
dishes. It was from her that I learnt the preparation of all sorts 
of salads and macedoines, and the mysteries of pickling and 
preserving. 

She was truly great in her art, which with her had uncon- 
sciously developed into a science. 

I have in after-life known Alexis Soyer and some other 
famous chefs. I gratefully acknowledge the many " wrinkles " I 
owe to my dear departed friends, John Brough, Thomas Littleton 
Holt, and James Lowe. 

The late Dr. Karl Tausenau showed me once how to make 
bouillabaisse without red gurnet. Horwitz, the chess-player and 
artist, was great in fish cooking. I learnt much from him in that 
special line of the art, more particularly the proper way of pre- 
paring carp a la polonaise i.e., with beer sauce. Charles Sala 
showed me how to cook a bloater to perfection by a new system, 
professedly invented by him, which had only the trifling draw- 
back of being a trifle expensive. It is easy to do : you take a 
large soup-plate and pour a quartern of the best whisky into it ; 
you then lay two fine bloaters on the plate, set fire to the spirit, 
and turn the bloaters over and over again in the burning whisky. 
When the spirit is consumed the herrings are done to perfection. 
A good dish, but not economical oh, no ! price of two bloaters, 
twopence, quartern of " fuel," eightpence an expensive luxury 
rayther ! I have also had the advantage of kitchening for a 
time with the renowned Madame Boileau, a first-rate Parisian 
purveyor of certain dishes, such as matelotes, sturgeon and 
salmon steaks, rognons sautes au vin de Madere with real 
Madeira, actually in the dish, not in the cook's stomach field- 
lark and field-fare pies, and most delicious pastry. Many a chat 
de re culinaria have I enjoyed with Godfrey Turner n'est-cepas 
tout dire ? And last, though certainly not least, I have in the 
course of many years interchanged many famous coquinarian 
receipts with my most esteemed friends Tegetmeier and Draper^ 
both of them high authorities on all things pertaining to the 
kitchen and the dining-room. But not one of all of these ever could 
reach to the non-excelsior height of that grand old female Gamaliel 
at whose feet a kind fate permitted me to sit and learn in my early 
boyhood.* 

* If any enterprising publisher feels inclined to go in for a really 
good cookery book, I am sure Messrs. Tinaley will be plase4 to give 
him the " Old Bohemian's " address. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 7 

Speaking of my friend Draper, even as I write this the dear 
fellow sends me, per letter, one of his queer culinary concetti : 
"Tomato Tart. : Skin and slice the tomatoes as apples, only instead 
of sugar and cloves put pepper and salt and the merest trifle of 
grated lemon-peel and nutmeg, with a little butter tart as usual. 
Add a spoonful of Worcester, or Harvey, or Chef, or Nabob for 
gravy, and dish. Let me know how this agrees with you." 
" What a splendid sight is now before me," the letter runs on ; 
"your own favourite Bohemian glass mug, with the views of 
Munich and other sausage shops in enamelled ruby filled filled 
to the brim, with fresh sparkling ale in first-rate condition, rich 
gold in colour, frothing like milk newly-drawn from the cow, 
flavour that would send Olympus into ecstasies, and make the 
gods pitch their nectar into Styx (my service t'ye, sir !) Ha ! 
Bonam beerum non facit malum Latinam ! There, if that doesn't 
send you off to the nearest pub, I'll never mind." 

Food and drink are twins, that should be cultivated conjointly; 
the art and science of drinking and drinks is every whit as im- 
portant to life and health as the art and science of eating and 
food. Were this profound truth but once universally understood 
in all its details and bearings, man would socially and individually 
have taken an immense step in advance ; the momentous question 
of true moderation and real temperance would be finally settled, 
the extreme champions of hard drinking and total abstinence 
being both sent to the limbo of nonentities. 

Of our glorious old cook it might truly be said, omne tulit 
punctum, for she was equally great in the liquid as in the solid 
department ; and as she was my teacher in the one branch, so she 
was also within certain very strictly drawn limits my guide in 
the other. She taught me how to make good coffee, tea, and 
chocolate ; and how to prepare a variety of pleasant refreshing 
beverages. From her I learnt the great secret of real egg-flip 
and spiced ale. 

She taught mo the theoretical and the practical difference 
between infusion and decoction, and a skilful combination of the 
two, by which the most delightful cafe au lait is produced. From 
her I learnt the art of brewing and bottling beer, from sweet 
" Weizen Lager ' 2 a kind of Edinburgh ale, brewed from malted 
wheat to light bitter and Broihan a delightful non-intoxicant 
summer beer brewed without hops ; also the production of a 
wholesome pure strong vinegar for she was a rare domestic 
chemist, considerably in advance of the age in which she lived. 

It was by watching her on the sly that I found out her modus 
operandi in mixing the various kinds of grog, punch, toddy, etc., 
and learnt the go!4en rule of always putting in first the lemon or 



8 REMINISCENCES OF 

orange-peel, the pine-apple slices, etc., the spices (where needed), 
the acid and the sugar, then the water, and the spirit last. I had 
to watch her on the sly, for she was always wondrously anxious 
to keep me at a safe distance from anything in the shape of strong 
drink. Bless her dear memory for it ! 

It was only much later in life that I managed to acquire, 
gradually and progressively, that experience and skill in the 
brewing of a variety of cups, punches, grogs, bishops, cardinals, 
neguses, toddies, broses, and French burnt-brandy punch, for 
which, I think I may say it without vanity, I have so long enjoyed 
a nattering reputation among my friends. 

Burnt-brandy punch I learnt to prepare from no less a 
personage than General Cavaignac's brother, Godefroi, with 
whom, before his lamented death, I did a deal of potation, and, 
in the earlier period of our acquaintance, a trifle of conspiracy 
against Louis Philippe Smith as my friend de Godde-Liancourt 
slightingly dubs him for I was wondrously Eed in those days. 
Poor Alfred de Musset taught me how to emerald the emerald 
poison (which chiefly killed him) by adding to the absinthe one- 
fourth part of Chartreuse verte. Of my ever dear departed 
friend Jacobsen I learnt to compound a stunning liqueur of 
cherry broth, Maraschino, and Kirschwasser. The father of 
Angus B. Beach, a jovial old crony of mine, cut out for a 
veritable chief in Bohemia, even more so than his genial son, 
taught me how to brew toddy to perfection, and how to sip it 
with a due regard for next morning.* An ancient mariner, whom 
I met casually at the Ship Tavern, in Edinburgh, initiated me 
into the mysteries of Athol brose. My ever revered old master, 
the great Easpail, of camphor and spirit of hartshorn renown, 
and one of the most accomplished chemists of the age, showed me 
how to brew cardinal, bishop, and other wine punches. In milk 
punch and egg punch, par excellence, I had the illustrious Arnold 
Ruge for teacher, the author of " Die Loge des Humanismus." 

* Mr. Eeach, the elder, was an enthusiastic admirer and a most 
excellent judge of good music and singing. I remember on one occasion, 
when Jenny Lind was engaged at Her Majesty's Theatre in the Hay- 
market, I went with him to hear the great singer. The house was 
crowded in every part, and we could hardly secure standing room at the 
rear of the amphitheatre. It was an immense treat for my old friend. 
After a sweet simple ballad, sweetly fluted by the Swedish nightingale, 
he seized me by the arm in rapt ecstasy, his eyes suffused with tears, 
and literally dragged me from the place, downstairs into the street. He 
apologised to me, but told me that for the life of him he could not 
"ha'e bided anither minnit," as he would not for all in the world have 
the impression weakened which the singing of that ballad had made on 
his mind. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 9 

For my well-known skill in preparing real pine-apple cup I am 
indebted, in a great measure at least, to Johannes Ronge, of Holy 
Coat of Troves fame. My acknowledged super-excellence in 
" Maitrank" that wondrous drink of Hock or Moselle, flavoured 
with woodruff (Asperula odorata) I gratefully ascribe to the 
late Ludovicus Hausser, the historian, the famous president of 
the once renowned Heidelberg select jovial potatory circle, of 
which but few very few, alas ! are left Professor Treitschke for 
one, and Joseph Victor von Scheffel for another, the delightful 
singer of the trumpeter of Sackingen, and other equally charming 
poems Tempi passati. My talent for sparkling Burgundy cup 
and strawberry and raspberry bowl, I may, perhaps, be permitted 
to claim as inborn, or self-evolved. But I remember, a little over- 
late certainly, that self -laudation is no recommendation. How- 
ever, I may venture to plead in extenuation that when one has 
to be one's own trumpeter, it is just as well to do the thing 
handsomely. Moreover, is it not natural that self should enter, 
say even a little unduly, in personal reminiscences ? 

It is my deliberate opinion, born of observation and ripened 
by manifold experiences in the course of a long life, that no 
system of education can properly be called liberal which does not 
comprise in its programme theoretical and practical instruction in 
the preceding important branches of the true art of living. 

The proper and intelligent preparation of at least the common 
articles of food has always seemed to me as essential to man, as 
it is admittedly to woman. One clear half of the ills that flesh is 
heir to would have to take their departure if this truth were once 
fully and practically recognised. As it is, unhappily, how very 
few even of our girls are ever instructed in the merest rudiments 
of the great science of the kitchen and cellar. But this is a 
digression, the reader will say. I humbly admit it. I am afraid 
every act and deed of mine is somehow of the nature of a 
digression. Am I not, perhaps, myself a digression of Nature P 

Another debt of gratitude I owe to dear old Li no, hang it ! 
dear old Thusnelda Irraa; I will not snub her memory by dubbing 
her Lise. But of this hereafter. 

I have stated already that our wanderings included the 
dreary regions of Poland and Russia. My parents, persistently 
bent upon their fool's errand to take their pound of butter out of 
the Imperial dog's- mouth, were waging a desperate war againsfc 
Russian rapacity and roguery, and Tartar thievery, and against 
the turpitude and venality of courts and judges in the blessed 
dominions of the White and Yellow Czar, which would occasion- 



10 REMINISCENCES OF 

ally necessitate their presence on the spot. I was much too> 
young then to retain any but the dimmest notion of what it was 
all about. However, later on I was told that it was a question of 
contested identity in a suit for restitution of certain estates 
wrongfully declared estreated to the Crown, in which suit said 
Crown proved so superlatively exacting that when my poor 
mother had at last succeeded in establishing the fact that she 
truly was her father's daughter, the proof of a negative was put 
upon her, to wit, that she should show, to the satisfaction of the 
court, she had not been changed at nurse ! I verily believe it 
was something of the sort. 

Questions of contested identity are ticklish things, you see. 
In cases where the law wants to hang a man alleged to be the 
real Simon Pure who has deservedly incurred the penalty, 
identification by a couple of hard-swearing policemen is deemed 
amply sufficient to settle -his hash, and draw the rope pretty 
tight round his neck. But in cases of disputed succession to 
property, the matter is vastly different, as many an unhappy 
claimant has found out to his bitter sorrow. Possession is 
generally considered to be nine points of the law out of ten ; but 
where the Crown holds it against even the most legitimate 
claimant, it is the full ten points and a trifle over. 

There was, once upon a time, a family of some note in the free 
City of Frankfort-on-Main. Eisenherz Ironheart was the name, 
I think. Two members of this family went to other lands 
the one to France, where he altered his patronymic, for con- 
venience, to Isnard ; the other to Geneva, in Switzerland, where 
he came to be called Eynard. 

Some thirty-five or forty years after a very large fortune fell 
to this Eisenherz family. Well, it took the French and Swiss 
branches twenty-five years to establish their descent and identity, 
more than half the estate passing meanwhile into the great 
melting-pot of the law. 

After a short stay at Linden my parents, hoping almost against 
hope that renewed personal presence and pressure might favour- 
ably promote their suit, betook themselves, with me, of course, 
once more to the Eussian empire, only to be once more thwarted 
and disappointed at every step they essayed. As they were by 
no means altogether blindly unpractical people, their eyes opened 
at last to the true position of affairs and the hopelessness of all 
chance of success. So they gave up the unequal contest, in 
which they clearly saw now they were simply dropping their 
substance in vain efforts to snatch at a shadow. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 11 

But before they came to this wise resolution I had that brief 
glimpse of fairyland which made the first more lasting impression 
upon my young heart and mind. 

It was in Moscow, just slowly rising from its ashes. I was 
going on for eight then. Here, in the old-new city, I first met her 
who, had I and she been but ten years older, might have proved 
my i'ate. She was a little fairy of seven, with golden hair, a milk- 
and-rose complexion, sweet hazel eyes with long silken lashes, 
and an audaciously impertinent turn-up nose. Her tiny feet were 
cased in dainty fur boots, that might have put to the blush Cin- 
derella's famous fur slipper.* Her name was Olga. She was our 
little hostess, the party being given by her parents. One look 
into the wondrous depth of her eyes and I felt I was undone. 
My little divinity graciously deigned to take notice of me. I 
think it must have been on account of my long curly locks, which 
she declared she admired greatly. Ere yet the evening was far 
advanced, we fell deeply in love with one another at least I with 
her as she professed with delightfully naive frankness to be 
with me. In a sweetly demonstrative way she let me take a bite 
out of her apple ; I, in return, crammed a whole pocketful of 
sweets into her sweet little mouth. They must have been un- 
pleasantly warm; but what does true love care for such drawbacks? 
She ate them all, after which she gave me a doubly-sugared kiss 
behind one of the pillars in the ealoon. On our way to supper 
we pledged our mutual faith in whispers, I swearing to her that 
she was the only darling I ever loved, should ever love, or could 
ever love, she answering ditto. We both solemnly vowed to keep 
the secret of our mutual affection jealously hidden from the ken 
of a cold, sneering world; nay, from our own nearest and dearest) 
relations. 

This seems incredibly absurd ; in after-life it has often appeared 
to me an impossible farce. Yet it is strictly true. And why 
should it not be ? Has not that most acute observer of human 
nature, that deep student of men and women, and of the affections 

* Vair is the word, in Perrault's tales, not verre. Glass slipper is 
simply a blundering mistranslation. Yet learned men have been found, 
who, upon the assumed existence of perfectly flexible glass that could 
be woven into shoes and garments, have victoriously shown, to their own 
satisfaction at least, that the glass industry in our days is far less 
advanced than it was in t^e darker ages. It is to an unlucky substitu- 
tion of Ka/iTjXov for Ku/uAoi/ in the Greek text that we owe the spoiling of 
one of the most obviously intended and most beautiful similes in the 
New Testament. The error has been left untouched in the Revised 
Version. 



12 REMINISCENCES OF 

and passions of young and old, the wondrous magician of Gads- 
hill, drawn some delightful word-paintings of the loves of children, 
notably that most charming story of the juvenile elopement ? 
For six weeks I was permitted to serenely dream the dream of 
my first love. Then my beloved was carried off to Odessa by her 
cruel parents, whilst mine took me away with them to the city of 
the Ingrian swamp. 



For one whole month I grieved and moped and fretted and 
would not be comforted. Then I basely broke my vow of secrecy 
to my beloved, and sobbed my sad tale into my mother's sym- 
pathising ears, and was consoled by that dear maternal parent's 
promise that Olga should be mine in some sixteen years, should 
I then be still of the same mind. How the good lady must have 
laughed inwardly at my precocious folly ! 

Next day my father gave me a watch, which he strictly 
enjoined me not to open to look what was inside. He knew my 
disposition no one better. Was I not simply a second edition of 
himself ? The instant that I could steal away unobserved, I crept 
to my room, where I soon was busily employed in taking the works 
asunder, putting the wheels, screws, etc., in regular order, on a 
large sheet of paper, with the place of every part duly marked. 
Of course I unsettled the mainspring and could not put it to 
rights again. No matter ; I now knew what was inside the case, 
which just then was to me of much greater importance than to 
be able to tell the time by the dial. And, oh, for the fickleness 
of man's heart and the fleeting nature of man's affections, all 
sweet remembrance of my own beloved Olga was crowded out of 
my mind by the one intense, all-engrossing thought how to 
restore the mainspring to what it had been ere I had meddled 
with it ! 



Some eleven years after I met my first love again. It was in 
Berlin, where I was a student then. She, fickle girl, had jilted 
poor me, and got married to a young man attached to her and to 
the Eussian Embassy to the Court of Prussia, and she pretended 
not to remember me ! It might be that, like Samson, I had then 
been shorn of my locks. I remembered her very well ; but I had 
by that time come to look upon turn-up noses as snubs, and 
wondered much in my mind how I could ever have mistaken that 
Eussian goose for a swan. Well, well ! I met her first when she 
was a gosling ; so, as I learnt after from Hans Andersen's sweefc 
tale of the ugly duckling, I might well be excused for not know- 
ing then what she might grow to be. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 13 

We went back to Linden, all three of us sadder, if not wiser ; 
for, as for me, had not my watch been taken away to be repaired, 
and had it not been decided in the supreme family council that I 
was too young and too foolish and too disobedient to be trusted 
with one ? 

Now came the happiest time of my life unhappily the only 
truly happy time I ever enjoyed like unto a bright summer day 
without a cloud in view, and fanned by gentle breezes. I was 
basking in the genial sunshine of parental affection. Dear old 
Thusnelda Irma fondled and spoiled me as had I been her very own 
child, and everybody else around and about me loved, or pro- 
fessed to love me which comes very much to the same thing, for 
the time being at least. I learned to speak German like a native 
of Hanover, which implies that I learnt to speak it in its melodious 
purity. 

I was not called on at this time to learn much else. My 
parents held the sound doctrine that my physical and moral 
training, and the cultivation and development in me of the per- 
ceptive and observant faculty, were the things of the highest im- 
portance at my early period of life. The first school to which I 
was sent was the glorious school of Nature ; I was let roam freely 
over hill and dale, and to paddle my own little canoe on the ponds. 
Boys, as a very general rule, are naturally unconscious of or in- 
sensible to the sufferings inflicted by them upon their humbler fel- 
lows in God's creation. I am sadly afraid I was in this respect very 
much like most other boys. I was passionately addicted to birds'- 
nesting,and I am sorry to remember now that it hardly ever occurred 
to me to leave even a nest-egg to partially console the unhappy 
parent birds for their cruel bereavement. I decapitated flies just 
to see how they would get on without heads. I was wofully 
hard upon the unlucky May-bugs that happened to fall into 
my little hands. I would knock their heads off, just to try 
whether the contents of the thorax tasted really like filberts, 
as I had been confidently assured by other small villains. I 
was an ardent collector of butterflies and beetles, and never 
felt troubled about how they liked having pins stuck through 
' them. The squealing of a pig in its last agony had nothing 
in it discordant to my ear; and I even thought it rare fun to 
watch a decapitated hen vainly essaying to rush about. In 
short, I was a wicked little wretch. I feel acutely and regretfully 
conscious of this even now, although my excellent friend Teget- 
meier, who is on familiar terms with bees, pigeons, and poultry, and 
knows all about the rest of animated nature, has consolingly 
assured me over and over again that the sensorium in insects 
and the other smaller fry of vertebrates is but very imperfectly 



14 REMINISCENCES OF 

sensitive. As for the invertebrates, why, the whole boiling of 
them could not muster among them the realisation of an hour's 
toothache. Non meus hie sermo mind; let Teg answer for it 
and Darwin, who tells us that worms on the hook wriggle out of 
all proportion to their sufferings. Happily for me, my good 
mother lovingly took this branch of my moral training in her 
own dear kind hands so soon as she chanced to discover my 
cruel propensities. She weeded my heart and mind of these 
vile excrescences, and implanted in me instead that universal 
intelligent charity to all God's creation, the best and most 
acceptable of all prayers the love of God's creatures both 
great and small which forms the chief tenet of the true saving 
faith preached to mankind by the Divine Teacher. Bless her, to . 
me, ever dear memory for it ! 

" Dum vitant stulti vitia, in contraria currunt," says dear old 
Horace, as Hannay used to have it. When a fool drops a 
vicious habit he is apt to take up with its opposite. I have 
an uncomfortable notion that I must always have been a fool. 
In later life I have often been reproached with growing more and 
more mawkishly sentimental in my relations to animals. There 
may be some truth in this reproach ; I may be running to the other 
extreme. The nearer the close of my own terrestrial existence is 
drawing in the natural order of things, the more sensitive I 
grow, not merely to the infliction of all suffering on the brute 
creation, but also to what I am bluntly told by my friends, 
I would morbidly, and in the very teeth of the plainest laws 
of Nature and the most obvious facts before my eyes, hold 
to be the inviolable sacredness of animal life. Even the wasp 
nay, the bug is pretty safe now from my destroying hands. 
I am as sturdy in my indignant opposition to vivisection as 
the great Spurgeoii himself, and my philanthropic friend 
A. F. Astley, whose kindness of heart and feeling does not 
stop short at his own species, but embraces his humbler fellow- 
creatures on earth. And I loathe the very remembrance of 
Magendie, and his fellows and followers in that most cruel 
and I maintain it, let who may gainsay it at least most 
inadequately useful branch of the study of life and health, 
which I, indeed, conscientiously believe to be nearly altogether 
barren of sound fruit the very high authority of Yirchow, Owen, 
Huxley, and other men whom I deeply revere notwithstanding. 

"A survey of what has been attempted of late years will prove 
that the opening of living animals has done more to perpetuate 
error than to confirm the just views taken from the study of 
anatomy " (Bell's " Nervous System "). I most fully endorse this 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 15 

deliberate opinion of Sir Charles Bell. I fearlessly ask what 
benefit has accrued to mankind from Magendie and " consorts' " 
truly fiendish cruelties perpetrated upon hundreds of unhappy 
rabbits, dogs, and other " lower" animals, as these great investi- 
gators are, in their overweening pride and the callousness of their 
hard hearts, pleased to call their wretched victims ? Among other 
nice performances in vivisection, Magendie sliced away the brains 
of several hundred rabbits. Will anyone be kind enough to tell 
us what useful information has been derived from these most 
cruel experiments ? Fiat experimentum in corpora vili is a 
favourite old saying with these ardent searchers into the secrets 
of life. One of them, Dr. Eutherford of Edinburgh, claims the 
right to torture his miserable victims under the worthless and 
vile plea that they are old and otherwise useless. And he puts 
them under the influence of curare, if you please curare! a 
hypersesthetic, according to Claude Bernard. Thirty-one old and 
otherwise useless dogs were despatched by this gentleman in one 
series of experiments, each vivisection lasting for hours, and all 
under the influence of curare ! And, please, where will the vilitas 
be permitted to stop in the end ? Have we not already had the 
question asked : Why criminals condemned to death should not 
be handed over to the vivisector ? Why not P After the murder 
o Wallenstein, one of the great General's adherents, Count 
Schaffgotscb, was tried for high treason, found guilty, and con- 
demned to death. The noble Austrian judges of these good old 
times deemed it expedient to obtain the doomed man's confession 
most likely because they were not quite convinced of his guilt 
and had tender consciences so they determined to put the con- 
demned man on the rack, coolly arguing that the condemnation 
had of itself made him servus pcence, and that he might therefore 
fairly be held a mere cadaver mortuum ; so they tortured him to 
their hearts' content. What are condemned criminals in our own 
time, it might well be argued by vivisecting enthusiasts, but 
servi pcence and cadavera mortua ? 1 had to listen the other day, 
with horror and disgust, to a lady a strong champion of the 
rights of women who boldly defended this identical view of the 
case. 

Magendie, I am convinced in my heart, would have been 
delighted, if the chance had been given him, to extend his vivi- 
secting experiments to the human species he was such a very 
eager searcher into the secrets of life and its processes. I shall 
never forget the row that was made over his unlucky prussic acid 
experiment, which laid low, at one fell swoop, eleven unfortunate 
epileptic patients, who had found themselves unable to stand a 
dose of 7 minims of the acide cyanhydrique au troisieme=^2^ grains 



16 EEMINISCENCES OF 

of anhydrous hydrocyanic acid ! or, not to exaggerate carelessly, 
l grain, supposing the acid au sixieme to have been used. Of 
course, the great experimenter showed that it was not he who 
was to blame, but the stupid dispenser of the dose, who should 
have given Magendie's syrup instead of either of the more con- 
centrated preparations. It was a great pity that there were not a 
few more epileptics handy to try the syrup upon them. 

And what about the latest and most horrible feat of certain 
learned professors to deprive an unhappy animal for life of the 
blessed senses of sight and hearing ! And cui bono ? 

Oh, Science! what crimes have been, and continue to be, 
perpetrated in thy name! 

Boys must have something to occupy and amuse their minds. 
I was always of an inquiring disposition. I believe I broke every 
toy I ever had given me, just to see what was inside. It was this 
spirit of inquiry that made me come to grief with my first watch. 
But the mere breaking of toys could not satisfy long a boy like 
me. From an early period of my boyhood I took passionately to 
what the illustrious author of " Alton Locke " used to call; rather 
sneeringly, " The bottle-and-squirt mania ;' J in which, however, 
by-the-bye, I have reason to believe the great writer himself 
loved much to dabble. 

I never met Charles Kingsley, but I have had the good fortune 
of being often in the charming company of that most erratic 
genius, his brother Henry, who had as much zest for quaint or 
paradoxical remarks as Arthur Lillie has, and as my departed 
friend, Eobert Brough, used to have. Arthur Lillie, in his " King 
of Topsy-Turvy," has, among other delightfully nonsensical 
sensible remarks, this : 

"Don't make a golden bridge for a flying enemy. If he 
deserves to be an enemy, pitch him into the river." 

Henry Kingsley, Harry Leigh, and my humble self were at 
Ashley's one day, discussing some question of the time ; I had 
occasion to observe that it was a most un-English and inexcusable 
proceeding to kick a man when he was down. Harry Leigh 
expressed his hearty concurrence in this sentiment ; not so Henry 
Kingsley, who turned almost fiercely upon us. " What ! " shouted 
he ; " not kick a man when he is down ! What nonsense ! When 
can you have a fairer chance of kicking him than when he is 
down ? Would you let him get up again to kick you when you 
have foolishly given him the opportunity ? No, my boys ! learn 
ye wisdom ! Kick your enemy when he is down ; trample upon 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 17 

him, stamp the life out of him ! so shall you prosper. Reducing 
the number of your enemies is tantamount to increasing the 
number of your friends. This is the true practical wisdom of 
life, my boys. Don't cultivate spurious sentiment! " Whether 
he meant what he was saying, I cannot tell ; I can only say that 
to me he looked terribly in earnest. Perhaps he had had some 
bitter experience of the danger of generous forbearance shown to 
a certain class of enemies. 

An illustrious French political leader of the present day* 
some years since magnanimously saved the life of another French 
politician, who, in return, strove might and main after to destroy 
his noble benefactor socially, politically, and morally. And we 
are not without illustrative instances nearer home. 

I vividly remember to this present hour the joy and pride 
that was swelling my bosom when I became the happy possessor 
of a Dobereiner platinum apparatus, or fire-generator a scientific 
toy in which fire was produced by making hydrogen gas impinge 
upon spongy platinum. 

This was in the venerable old days of the tinder-box, with its 
flint and steel, and brimstone match, ere lucifers, vestas, and 
vesuvians, or even briquets phosphoriques were yet dreamt 
of. I well remember the time when these latter came first into 
use, superseding at last the clumsy old way. These briquets 
phosphoriques, or inflammable match phials, consisted of a 
small phial of glass or lead, either with a bit of phosphorus 
inside, slightly oxidised by stirring it with a red-hot iron 
wire ; or filled with a mixture of cork-raspings, wax, petroleum, 
and phosphorus, fused together to a paste. Sulphur matches 
dipped into the phial would kindle instantaneously. After this 
the oxygenated matches came in splinters tipped with sulphur 
(as a rule), which were dipped in a paste of powdered chlorate of 
potassa, flowers of sulphur, sugar, gum arabic and water. They 
were then thoroughly dried in a warm place. They would kindle 
on dipping them into a small well-stoppered phial with concen- 
trated sulphuric acid in it, thickened with asbestos. Soon after 
the friction or instantaneous light match came in. Verily, verily, 
when I look back to the days of my childhood, with the tinder- 
box and the oil-lamp, the wax taper, the tallow dip and mould, or 
the still more primitive rushlight ; the rare, heavily taxed and 
slow journeying letter; the cumbrous old stage-coach and the 
special express, forcing its speed actually up to nine, and even 
ten miles per hour ; the inexpressibly vile and horrible curative ( !) 

* Gambetta he is now no more ! His intr&nsigeant reviler survives 
him. 



18 REMINISCENCES OF 

science and art ; the old, old Berzelian chemistry of the period ; 
and many other equally old things I cannot but feel deeply 
grateful to the Almighty Power, who has graciously permitted 
the lines of my life to fall in the pleasant places of marvellous 
progress which mark this nineteenth century of ours. And yet, 
and yet : can it be truly averred that man is now more happy 
and contented ; or, rather, less miserable and discontented, than 
he was in the time of my childhood ; or, than he is ever likely to 
be, even though electric air-ships should convey him to the Moon, 
or to Jupiter, Saturn, Venus, or Mars ? This is the true great 
puzzle, the unsolvable problem. 

Gunpowder and explosives were my special delight as they 
continue, indeed, to the present day. Before I was eleven I was 
pretty expert in pyrotechnics; but I was particularly great in 
artificial volcanoes, which I used to manufacture by mixing 
together powdered charcoal, nitre, iron-filings, and flowers of 
sulphur in certain proportions, and working the mixture into a 
heavy paste wih water. This paste some eight or ten pounds in 
weight was then stuffed closely into a suitable iron pot, which, 
with a strong pig's bladder tied over, was put several feet into the 
ground, and covered with earth. In about twenty-four hours or 
so the mass in the pot, heating spontaneously, would burst forth 
like a volcanic eruption, throwing up the earth covering it, and 
sending forth a stream of lava which it was a joy to behold ! 

Boys, as a rule, are fond of gunpowder, explosives, and pyro- 
technics ; so are a great many grown-up boys. My dear friend 
Draper remains to the present day passionately addicted to 
rockets and crackers, and Catherine wheels, and fire-arms, and 
Chinese and Bengalese fires. 

Another esteemed friend of mine, Dr. Scoffern, a most excellent 
chemist, and a man of inventive genius, was always doing some- 
thing in explosive bombs, etc. I remember on one occasion, when 
he had just invented a formidable bomb that would explode on 
striking against any hard body, we went to what is now the 
Alhambra, but was at the time just on the point of opening as the 
Panopticon. It was a kind of private, or press view, of the 
premises. If I recollect aright, poor Leicester Buckingham was 
one of us. In the midst of our glee and merry-making the devil 
must, forsooth, tempt Scoffern to whisk out from his coat-pocket 
one of these nice little destructive implements, and to attempt to 
explain their nature and use. He did not proceed far, however, 
for there was a general stampedo and skedaddle, poor Leicester 
Buckingham leading the strategic movement to the rear with all 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 19 

practicable speed of his long legs. I must confess I felt nervous. 
But I was soon reassured, and so were the rest, by Scoffern 
shouting at the top of his voice, " Why, you set of ninnies, you 
don't surely think that I carry it in my pocket charged ? It is 
only the empty shell I want to explain to you simply how it is 
charged, and how the explosion takes place." Poor Leicester was 
pale for three days after. 

Dr. Scoffern was once on the high road to millionairism. He 
had excogitated and invented a new method of sugar refining, by 
means of sulphite of lead. The invention was patented and taken 
up vigorously by large capitalists and sugar refiners. Scoffern 
had to go to Spain and Cuba. He left me to see his work on 
sugar refining through the press. I had known him and loved 
and admired him for years. We had been working conjointly- 
upon the Pharmaceutical Times and the Chemical Times. I 
thought my fortune was made, for a more noble-minded and 
generous fellow than Scoffern never drew the breath of life. Sir 
Charles Wood, afterwards Lord Halifax, was at that time Secretary 
for the Colonies. He submitted the new method .to the investiga- 
tion and judgment of another of my oldest friends, Professor de 
Yry. Unhappily it turned out that, although in the hands of an 
accomplished, careful chemist there was no danger whatever of 
the least trace of lead (from the sulphite) being left in the sugar 
refined by the proposed new method, that danger existed to a 
truly formidable extent, where careless or ignorant people more 
particularly negroes in the West Indies had to be entrusted 
with the working of the processes. De Yry made his report 
accordingly, and the affair collapsed. I hated De Yry at the 
time. I have forgiven him long since though, and we meet 
occasionally in our mutual friend Bullock's laboratory, where we 
clink and drink the social glass together, and talk of bygone old 
times. 

Another of my acquaintances, who has long since joined the 
majority, was wondrously fond of dabbling in explosives. His 
name was Naundorff. He was a watchmaker by trade ; but, bless 
you, he was the Duke of Normandy by profession, and the 
legitimate King of France. Louis Philippe was at the time, to 
all appearance at least, rather firmly fixed in what should have 
been his, the Duke of Normandy's seat. He explained this often 
to me, and I did not contradict him, because it pleased the poor 
fellow, who was a nice old gentleman in the main, with a strong 
Bourbon cast of countenance, and a real, or marvellously well- 
assumed, conviction of the justice of his claims and pretensions. 
Besides, I had no wish to interfere injuriously with his position 

2 



20 REMINISCENCES OF 

with another old friend of mine still to the fore, fresh as a daisy, 
with close upon fourscore on his back ! dear old Joe Buck, 
who assisted the "Duke" generously in his experiments with 
explosives. 

In 1851 the "Duke" brought an action in the French courts 
to recover the personal property of the Duchess of Angouleme. 
The affair ended in a nonsuit. What a king the " Duke " would 
have made, to be sure, with his gunpowdery and bombic pro- 
pensities ! Dis aliter visum. He died soon after ; and I cannot 
help thinking that the gods were quite right to see the matter in 
a different light from what Naundorff would dearly have wished 
them to see it in. After all is said and done, everything is for the 
best in this best of worlds although I could have wished success 
to the "Duke," as he might have remembered me right royally. 
The " Duke's " claim died not with him. Twenty years after his 
son, M. " A. de Bourbon," an officer in the Dutch army, employed 
M. Laurent Eabier, a Paris advocate of some standing, to revive 
the claim to no purpose, however. 

Electric machines and electrophores ranked high in my affec- 
tions. I used to take a special pleasure in charging a glass of 
wine and presenting it slyly to a lady. I danced with impish 
delight when the tiny spark popping against the rosy lip would 
amaze or disconcert the fair one. 

Many years after I met an audacious quack at Lyons, who 
was making much good money by practising a new method of 
administering curative agents through the medium of electricity. 
This man was a curious compound of a Joseph Balsamo and a 
Mesmer, with a dash of the great Samuel of Coethen thrown in 
by way of make-weight. Beyond doubt or question he was clever, 
and by no means without solid acquirements. He might, indeed, 
have been an estimable physician of any orthodox school, had he 
not, for the sake of his pocket, preferred dealing in quackery. 
He knew excellently well how to act upon the imagination of 
those who came to consult him. He had hired a fine apartment 
on the Place Bellecour, where the consultants as he was pleased 
to call them were received, with due solemnity, by a venerable 
old man in black velvet, who passed them into a waiting-room, 
furnished neatly but with severest simplicity. Prom this a page 
in blue velvet ushered them into the doctor's consultation room, 
where the great man sat at a large ebony table, with a ledger-like 
book before him, in which he entered the name, etc., of the con- 
sultant, the ailment, its symptoms, and the remedy which he 
thought best suited to the case. The fee had to be placed on the 
table, the learned physician declining to soil his learned fingers 
with the vile dross, which he simply condescended to accept in 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 21 

return for his advice and physic, to enable him to keep up his 
establishment for the benefit of suffering humanity. As this fee 
was twenty-five francs, there was but a minimum chance that any 
of his consultants would be likely to feel inclined to inquire too 
curiously. From the consultation room the consultant, supplied 
with a card of instructions for the dispenser, was ushered by 
another page, in green velvet, into the dispensary hall a spacious 
saloon with a raised platform at one end. This platform rested on 
small glass pillars, about eighteen inches high, coated with sealing 
wax ; it was carpeted all over with thick silk. In one corner stood 
a so-called homoeopathic pharmacy, consisting of a number of 
Ley den jars, labelled severally arsenic, antimony, belladonna, 
castoreum, opium, pulsatilla, mercury, iron, and many more 
remedial agents used by homoeopathists in infinitesimal doses. 
A large electric machine was placed near the pharmacy, and con- 
tiguous to a table with a number of crystal drinking cups upon it, 
and about a dozen carafes filled severally with water and various 
sorts of wines and liqueurs. The handle of the machine was turned 
by a boy dressed in crimson silk. The so-called dispenser was a 
handsome young man a brother of the physician, it was said 
dressed in a flowing black silk robe. Chairs were placed on the 
platform for the accommodation of the consultants, who had their 
ascent facilitated by a glass block about nine inches high, and 
coated with sealing wax, placed before the centre of the platform. 
The consultant having taken his seat, and handed his card to the 
dispenser, the latter gentleman would gravely pour the appro- 
priate vehiculum (as a rule wine or liqueur, only occasionally 
mixed with water) into one of the cups, then take down the 
Leyden jar labelled with the name of the remedy prescribed, 
charge the jar at the electric machine, and dash one or several 
sparks into the liquid the same as I had so often done in my 
boyhood for mere mischief. 

Well, as I have hinted, the physician was a clever man; he 
confined himself almost exclusively to the treatment of nervous 
disorders ; he gave most excellent dietetic advice ; he discouraged 
frequent visits to his consultation room ; and, I verily believe, 
with all his quackery, he did a deal of good to those who came 
to consult him. I was sent to inquire into his system and mode 
of treatment. I was candid with him and he was equally candid 
with me. ft turned out that the whole staff of the establishment 
belonged to the same family brother, uncle, and cousins of 
the great healer at the head of the undertaking which he called 
"Electric Homoeopathy. " Well, well! I myself was doing in 
homoeopathy at the time, and, as Byron says, " a fellow feeling 
makes us wondrous kind." I made my report to MM. Des Guidi 



22 REMINISCENCES OF 

and Desaix, who had sent me, and discouraged to the best of 
my power any hostile attempt on the part of these physicians 
against their clever competitor, who, after some six or seven 
weeks' stay, left Lyons with his establishment for fresh fields 
and pastures new. I wonder how a thing of the kind would 
do in London at this present time. I only hope that if the 
suggestion is taken up a handsome commission will be handed 
to me. 

It was about the same time when my dear good mother, 
by her gentle precepts, caused me to drop my objectionable 
practices in pursuit of the study of natural history, that I 
had given me two other most excellent lessons, which I am 
happy to say have borne good fruit to me through life : Thus- 
nelda Irma gave me one, my father the other. 

My father liked a small glass of Chartreuse or Curasao 
after dinner. In Russia he had acquired a penchant also it 
was the only thing he ever acquired there for Naliwka, the 
general name given to all sorts of fruit liqueurs, for the 
fabrication of which the south of Russia is famous, more 
particularly the city of. Kieff ; so he kept always a rich store 
of them in a large cellaret. This cellaret, and the evident 
delight with which father and his guests degusted its contents 
both before and after dinner, set agog the inquisitive and 
speculative faculty in me. Now my mother, in her maternal 
solicitude for my welfare, and in her apprehension lest I should 
take a fatal liking to these wondrously seductive drinks, had 
solemnly enjoined upon me never to touch one of them, not 
even to the extent of one drop. She told me they had dreadful 
effects upon children, and were even dangerous to grown-up 
people. With my perverse disposition, mamma's well-meant 
warnings acted on me of course simply as an additional and 
irresistible incentive to have a try ; this, however, I found not 
easily practicable, as the key was never, by any chance, left in 
the cellaret. So I had perforce to rest content and bide my 
time for a chance. 

Meanwhile I resolved to pump Thusnelda Irma upon the 
subject of the cellaret and its contents. Well, the old woman 
was as sharp as a needle ; she knew my nature and disposition 
better than my own mother did ; so she saw at once what I was 
driving at, and in her love for me she determined to give me 
a deterrent lesson in the matter of spirits and liqueurs. 

" Would the darling little gentleman like to have a taste out 
of some of the flasks ? " she blandly inquired. Of course, the 
darling little gentleman would. " Oh ! ever so much ! dear, dear 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 23 

Thusnelda Irma," I eagerly replied, giving her thus a double dose 
of flattery. 

" Well, darling, to-night I'll coax a glass out of mamma for 
myself, which you shall have. But I must tell you, dear, I 
am afraid you will not like it much. I never can make out 
what great people find in the nasty stuff to make them drink 
it. I suppose it is habit. However, you will judge for yourself." 
And she fondly patted me on the cheek somewhat in the fashion 
of the Man of Karioth, as I found out in the bitter end. 

I waited most impatiently for evening. I crept to the kitchen, 
where I found cook with a tall liqueur flask and a small crystal 
glass. She fondly patted me again on the cheek, asked me never 
to tell, and filled the glass for me. I eagerly tossed it off. It 
was like unto the book in the Revelation, barring that it was not 
sweet as honey in my mouth by no means the very reverse 
indeed; I have the taste on my tongue now. And the sad havoc 
it played with my unhappy inside would surely have been a 
oaution and a half to the wickedest little sinner alive. At least it 
proved a caution to me : I was on the sick list for a full week, 
being dosed all the time with gruel and chamomile tea by the 
doctor, who vainly strove to make out what could be the matter 
with me, for of course I would not peach ; I never yet could do 
that. In the innocence of my heart I did not suspect the trick 
that had been played upon me, but I manfully resolved to stick 
to wine and beer ; it was only years and years after that I could 
overcome my repugnance to liqueurs, and I have never taken 
over kindly to them. What had the dear old woman put into the 
liqueur to disgust me from future degustation ? I never exactly 
knew ; but when I had become a student of medicine, and had to 
taste the horrid abominations of the materia medico, of the old 
school, I guessed it must have been a nauseous mixture of aloes, 
jalap, valerian, and ox-gall. Fugh ! yet how devoutly I wish all 
my evil propensities had been taken out of me, even though in a 
similar fashion ! 

My father was an inveterate smoker, who liked his weed 
strong, and had the meerschaum hardly ever out of his mouth, 
except at meals ; yet he was always talking of the pernicious 
effects of tobacco, lamenting that he had ever acquired so dele- 
terious a habit, of which he felt, however, he unhappily could not 
rid himself " at his time of life." He was about thirty-five then : 
not so very late in life surely I had a notion in my sceptical 
young mind but that he might have made an effort had he 
really meant it, which the placid contentment that would settle 
on his face whenever he was blowing a cloud was rather calcu- 



24 EEMINISCENGE8 OF 

lated to make me doubt. So I must, forsooth, take it into my 
confounded little noddle that I was bound in the simplest duty 
to myself to put the truth of the paternal asseverations to the 
crucial test of my own very small personal experience ; which I 
determined to do accordingly. 

With a view of carrying this most laudable purpose of mine 
into practical execution, I resolved to address myself to Fritz, our 
stable-boy, a lad of sixteen, with, I am sorry to say, more vices in 
him than he numbered years. Among other pleasant habits, he 
swore like a trooper, drank like a fish,* and smoked like a 
chimney. Master Fritz was a wide-awake lad, more particularly 
in matters where his own personal interests were concerned. He 
told his "young gentleman" that he, Fritz, would teach said 
young gentleman to smoke, on condition that he, the said Fritz, 
should be supplied with a few pounds of the young gentleman's 
gracious father's best American and Turkish weed and no tales 
told. 

At that time I had no very clear idea of meum and tuum. I 
had simply a hazy notion that all that belonged to me by any sort 
of legitimate right of possession was my very own ; and that all 
that happened to belong to other people was rightfully my property 
also, to the extent to which I might wish to claim a share in it. 
So here I was actually standing on the very brink of two sad 
transgressions pilfering, to wit, and indulgence in a vicious habit 
against which my father had impressively warned me by most 
obvious implication at least. 

Luckily for me, father, who delighted to indulge o' nights in a 

* I use the expression here in its generally received acceptation, not 
in its true actual sense. It is, however, occasionally applied in this 
latter way. 

In one of the many anecdotes told of the famous Chitty, it is related 
how that wondrous luminary of the law once had to defend a gentleman 
who was sued in damages for defamation of character. 

One of the upper servants of said gentleman, wishing to " better 
himself," had succeeded in getting the place of house-steward to a 
noble lord, subject to the result of inquiries into his antecedents, habits, 
etc. Among the questions asked by his lordship figured prominently 
" Does he drink ? " To this the gentleman, who felt offended with his 
servant for wishing to leave him, with malice prepense, appended for 
reply, " Drink ? Like a fish ! " 

Upon which the noble lord declined ratifying the engagement. The 
aggrieved man, who in sober truth had never in his life drunk aught 
stronger than water from the fountain or tea, brought his action. 
Chitty coolly pleaded that saying of a man that he drank like a fish 
" was truly the highest testimonial of sobriety one could give him ; 
for fishes were naturally restricted to the pure element, and never yet, 
to his knowledge, had a fish incurred a charge of indulgence in spirituous 
potations." 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 25 

contemplative semi-somnolent smoke in the garden, kept singu- 
larly alive and awake on the particular night when I was intent 
upon reducing his " American, etc., stores." So he pounced upon 
me inflagranti. He was a wise man, however, and a most loving 
father to me then, when, next to his beloved wife, I was still 
nearest to his heart. He pretended to be unaware of my vile 
errand of abstraction. "Ah, Stannic,"* he said, "my boy! 
admiring my pipes, and smelling my tobacco? That is right. 
Would you like a smoke, my boy ? " He said this in such a 
hearty way, and with such an air of bonhomie about it, that I was 
taken in completely, and eagerly cried: "Yes, papa, won't I? 
Will a duck swim ? I want to try, papa, what it is like." 

" All right ; you shall, my child," said papa. " You see, dear 
Stannic, in smoking there are three classes of people some who 
take to it naturally and kindly, and to whom it is meat and drink 
and life; others, like myself, with whom it does not agree, yet 
who are mostly forced to keep on with it if it has ever been allowed 
to lay a firm hold on them ; and lastly, a third class, who cannot 
stand it at all, and whom it is sure to kill if they persevere with 
it notwithstanding. Now let us try you, my child." Here he 
took down from his pipe-rack a magnificent meerschaum with 
amber mouthpiece, which he proceeded to fill with the very 
strongest and heaviest Havanna. He then, with a demoniacal 
grin, instructed me how to do the trick, and lighted my pipe with 
his own paternal hand. The first few whiffs made me feel awfully 
sick, the next few made me fearfully ill ; but papa stood over me 
calm as a judge, severe as fate, insisting that the test should be 
completely applied; to which end, he declared, it was absolutely 
indispensable that the first pipe should be smoked to the last 
shred of the weed in it. When I in agony pleaded for forbear- 
ance, he taunted me with want of pluck. This taunt sufficed. I 
smoked that wretched pipe to the very dregs, and nearly died of 
it. But the cure was complete in this instance also. I was dis- 
gusted with smoking for evermore. I dropped Fritz altogether, 
and I solemnly vowed never to take aught again without 
asking. 

I have ventured to bring in here these two episodes of my 

* An inordinate number of Christian names had been bestowed npon 
mo at my baptism. Stanislaus was the favourite one with my father ; 
my dear mother always called me Louis. In after years, when I found 
I was running considerable risk of having the old French saying, ' ' Plus 
de noms que de chemises," applied to me, I dropped a batch of them 
of the names I mean, of course, not of the shirts keeping but three, 
mostly even two only ; yet my old savage chum Tegetmeier will occa- 
sionally still send his missives to me addressed to "Dr. Alphabet ," 

to the puzzled postman's intensest perturbation of mind. 



26 REMINISCENCES OF 

early life, simply because I believe they may not prove altogether 
without some practical use to some reader at least. 

Some sixteen months of my young life passed almost without 
break in this happy, tranquil way. I literally took no thought 
for the morrow, and I found, in serenest untroubled enjoyment, 
superabundantly sufficient unto the day the good thereof. 

Then suddenly the clouds gathered, and the storm burst over 
me. I suffered the first true sorrow of my young life the most 
scathing, the most poignant sorrow, the most irreparable bereave- 
ment. My dear mother, who had long been ailing, was taken from 
me. EJieu ! It was only after I had lost her for evermore that I 
truly realised what I had lost in her. It is ever thus with man. 

This was my first introduction to the dark side of life. It was 
an excellent, a most promising beginning. 

My father was inconsolable for the loss of his dearly beloved 
wife, to whom he had truly owed the whole happiness of his life. 
In the first paroxysm of his grief he would have followed her 
into the tomb. Unhappily, my poor father's affections had too 
much of the demonstrative element in them to long outlast in 
fall force and vividness the severance from their object. In his 
relations to my dear departed mother he had been the ivy much 
more than the oak, the twining tendril rather than the supporting 
tree ; and tendrils unclasped from one stem or branch will soon 
strive to twine round another. 

I have not mentioned hitherto that a young Frenchwoman had 
for the last six months or so been an inmate of our home, as a 
companion to my mother and a governess to me. I never acquired 
aught from her but her Bordelesian accent, which often makes 
French people, even to the present day, mistake me for a Gascon. 
But she professed to be passionately fond of me, and perhaps she 
was while my dear mother lived. The human heart is so strangely 
constituted. 

Her love for me seemed to acquire still greater intensity from 
my most sad bereavement. She loved everything about me and 
belonging to me, particularly my father, in whom she soon took 
a most affectionate interest, which, with the artless ingenuousness 
of a candid mind, she took no care to conceal. Less than six 
brief months after the death of my dear mother, this clever young 
lady stepped into her late mistress's shoes. My father married 
her, or, to speak more correctly, she married my father ; and she 
presented him in a month or so less than the usual course of time 
with a daughter, followed about a year after by a second edition 
of a similar female article. 

I will here drop the curtain upon this section of my early life. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 27 

The subject is irksome to me. Suffice it then to say briefly that 
my earliest troubles in life dated from the time of my dear 
mother's death and my father's remarriage. , 

Madame continued to profess love for me ; but her acts were 
in singular contrast with her professions. I believe my father 
loved me still as of old, but he dared no longer show his love as of 
old. To please his young wife, he would even occasionally assume 
the character of the stern Boman father just to hide his lament- 
able weakness, poor man ! The servants, as is usual in such cases, 
sought to curry favour with the new powers that were, by slighting 
the poor orphaned boy whenever they thought a suitable opening 
offered for their petty malice. May be that I had, wittingly or 
unwittingly, given offence to one or the other in the days when 
retaliation on their part was out of the question. Still, when I 
remembered how they had borne themselves toward me of old, 
their changed ways hurt my acutely sensitive feelings. 

There was only one exception one being left in what had 
been my happy home, who loved me still, and minded not a whit 
to show it just as openly as of old ay, who, when she thought 
she saw that I was put upon too much, would dare to beard the 
lions in their den, telling Madame a bit of her mind, and up- 
braiding my father for his weakness. It was dear old Thusnelda 
Irraa, who stood thus valiantly forth in defence of her dead 
mistress's son ; and they had to put up with her brazen im- 
pudence, as Madame was pleased to call her attempted remon- 
strances, as they would have found it well-nigh impossible to 
replace her; for both my father and Madame loved first-rate 
cooking, and were inordinately proud of the fame of their culinary 
artist. I have in after-life known some famous chefs, but not 
one of them ever came up to her standard. 

Of course, all these things came to pass in snatches, as it 
were, and by degrees. But I lamp them together here, to use an 
expressive vulgarism, because I wish to have done with this part 
of my home life after my dear mother's death. 

My school life had begun about a month before this sad event. 
I was a little over nine when I was sent to my first school It 
was a preparatory establishment at Linden. The master's name 
was Meier. Herr Meier was a thoroughly good man and an 
excellent teacher ; a pedagogue in the best and truest sense of 
the word a guide of youth. He was gentle, patient, and indul- 
gent. He treated "the children entrusted to his care as beings 
endowed with mind and soul to be tenderly nurtured and intelli- 
gently trained, and with faculties to be developed not as mere 
creatures with bodies to be tortured and tempers to be broken, as 



28 REMINISCENCES OF 

but too many of our teachers persist in doing in the very teeth of 
the opposing experience of ages. His system was not like unto 
the fabled bed of Procrustes ; it was not based upon the notion, 
so arrantly stupid, yet seemingly so extensively entertained by 
sham preceptors, that the same last ought to serve for all boots 
alike. He possessed in the highest degree the rare art of im- 
parting knowledge to children. His moral influence over his 
pupils was surprising. It was based entirely on love and respect. 
He was a vivd voce and blackboard teacher. The wildest and 
most recalcitrant urchin would keep quiet under him, and but for 
the voice of the master, you might have heard a pin drop in his 
class. I am sure it was chiefly owing to the admirable system of 
this most excellent teacher that a few months under his tuition 
sufficed to initiate me fully into the mysteries of reading, writing, 
and ciphering at least to the extent of the four simple rules 
and to give me a clearer elementary conception of the physical 
world, and of the outlines of the history of man, than is to be 
learnt in many more pretentious schools in half a dozen years. 

True, my young faculties had not been stunted and crippled in 
their free growth and development by forced premature exercise. 
I had not had to throw away years of my young life upon the im- 
perfect acquisition of a scanty stock of the merest rudiments of 
knowledge. 

I was by no means a bright boy, nor a very painstaking one. 
I was naturally inclined to indolence, and loved play and idling 
and roaming about much better than learning. Yet, under the 
intelligent guidance of good Herr Meier my warmest blessing 
on his memory! the elements of knowledge fell to me almost with- 
out trouble, like ripe fruit, and I readily acquired the inestimable 
art of learning. Later on, I was introduced to the Latin tongue 
not to the Latin grammar, mind; for Herr Meier, like the 
sensible man he was, held it to be most irrational to bother and 
burthen a child with long strings of unintelligible grammatical 
rules governing the mechanical construction of a foreign tongue, 
ere the child's immature mind had yet had time and opportunity 
given it to grasp even the most elementary conception of the 
language itself. He used to compare this way of trying to teach 
the classic and foreign tongues to the transparent folly of begin- 
ning the building of a church at the steeple. Herr Meier's mental 
organisation presented, indeed, a rare combination of strong 
practical sense with deep and varied learning. 

I was a little over nine when I first entered the portals of the 
temple of knowledge under his guidance ; yet before I had 
reached the age of eleven I had overtaken most boys of twelve 
and thirteen who had been at school since the age of six or seven. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 29 

Had I but been permitted to continue my studies with this 
most excellent man and sage instructor, I might have gathered 
an infinitely vaster store of knowledge than I can boast of now ; 
and I am sure I might have grown up to be a wiser and a better 
man, and ray evening of life might be more serene. But Dis 
aliter visum it has always been thus with me through life. With 
perverse persistence the gods have invariably taken a different 
view from what I would have dearly liked them to take. 

It befell one day, that on my return from school in the 
afternoon, I found that another heavy blow had fallen upon me ; 
I had lost the only true friend I had till that disastrous day yet 
retained in my father's house. Thusnelda Irma was no more. 
She had died in harness, of an exceptionally heavy dinner of the 
cooking of it, of course, not of the eating. I keened over her as 
had she been a near and dear relation ; and I truly had occasion 
for it, as Madame, having no longer the fear of cook before her 
eyes, took it into her head to have me removed to a " higher " 
school. She, who had up to this always been complaining of the 
little progress I was making in learning, suddenly discovered 
that I was really getting too far advanced in knowledge to be left 
any longer at Herr Meier's small shabby school. Father, to do 
him justice, did not seem to like the notion to take me away from 
where I felt so happy, and was really getting on so well ; but, 
poor uxorious man, he had to give way as usual. Only he declined 
sending me away to Paris, to the College Louis le Grand,* as 
suggested by Madame ; so a compromise was effected, and I was 
sent to a private educational establishment at Burg, in Prussia, 
which was much more pretentious than the small shabby school 
at Linden to speak with Madame but was in every other way 
and respect vastly inferior to it. 

The career of a true, earnest, loving teacher is, as a rule, but 
a brief span. There are, of course, cases of exceptional longevity 
in the scholastic profession. Bat Herr Meier was not one of 
these. He died about ten years after I left Linden School. He 
died in harness : a stroke of apoplexy put an end to his noble life, 
in the very midst of his beloved, sorrowing pupils, at the early 
age of forty-five. 

* When, later in life, I came to know French schools and the system 
of education (!) obtaining therein, and more particularly made the 
acquaintance of men who had been dragged up at the College Louis le 
Grand, I devoutly blessed my stars that that truly awful infliction had 
been spared me, at least. I will say no more upon the matter in this 
place, as I may hare occasion, in the course of these reminiscences, to 
remark at greater length upon so-called education in France, as it was 
in my time. 



30 REMINISCENCES OF 

Many years after, in the summer of 1871, a most exceptional 
case of an aged schoolmaster fell within my own personal obser- 
vation. It was that of Mr. Dietrich Renter, one of the Masters 
of the Evangelical School of Yiersen, who was celebrating his 
diamond jubilee ! having been for sixty years a teacher at the 
school, without ever having been absent from duty one single 
half-day in the course of that long period, except in vacation 
times. He was then a fine, hale, hearty old man, looking likely to 
go on living and teaching for years to come. 

The principal of the establishment at Burg, though a Doctor 
of Philology, was simply a shallow scholastic prig, who altogether 
lacked the art and faculty of teaching children ; and there was 
not one of the assistant masters that could in intellectual calibre 
even remotely compare with the great and good man and teacher 
at Linden. 

I suffered materially from the change. All true intelligent 
training was at an end, and so, correspondingly, was my progress 
in learning for the time, although I had the heaviest work 
literally heaped upon me. Our plan of lessons was truly for- 
midable. Four days of the week we had eight hours in the 
schoolroom, the other two days, four hours ; two to three hours a 
day were taken up with the preparation of our lessons, and the 
senseless cramming of our memory with long strings of rules 
of Greek and Latin grammar, verbs, regular and irregular, 
passages from the classics which we did not understand, biblical 
excerpts, lists of Assyrian, Egyptian, Persian, etc., rulers, with 
the years of their accession and death or dethronement, and other 
trash of the kind, which could not possibly be of the least practical 
nse to us in after life. Upon the teacher and teaching of history 
I have to say something more later on. 

True, in my school days, there were not quite so many 
graphics, logics, and gnosies, as bewilder the minds of unhappy 
learners nowadays: but we were sufficiently bothered, never- 
theless, with a variety of studies to make our lives a torment 
and a misery unto us. The very little knowledge I acquired at 
this Burg school, by dint of hard plodding and pegging away at 
my books, was crude in the extreme, and got so mixed up in my 
memory and mind that it was practically worse than useless to 
me. I say advisedly, the little knowledge which I acquired, for 
certainly I was not taught it at this Burg school the masters 
finding it more convenient to make their pupils learn, than to 
teach them. 

In trying to make me learn Greek, the Doctor literally essayed 
to bnild the steeple of the church before he laid the foundation. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 31 

Before I knew a single word of the language, he made my very 
life irksome to me, by stupidly striving to cram my poor memory 
with a string of, to me, at the time utterly unintelligible, rules 
on the accents. The natural result was that my progress in 
Greek was slow in .the extreme, and that I would never after take 
kindly to that tongue, even when its beauties were becoming 
revealed to me. 

Our mathematical master also, who, by a most curious cumu- 
lation of functions, was at the same time our religious instructor 
and our professor of history, was a stiff and starch pedantic prig, 
who would never condescend to address himself intelligibly to the 
immature understanding of children, or essay toexplain to hispupils 
the why and wherefore of things, but would perversely persist in 
teaching axiomatically everything he fancied he knew. " It is so ; 
you have to take my word for it," was the only answer he would 
ever vouchsafe to give. "A point has no dimensions it has neither 
length nor width nor depth ; it is non-existent, in fact, and here you 
have it," he would say, chalking a point or dot on the blackboard. 
We saw that the dot luas there on the board before us, and that 
it did exist. But it was not the least use to ask the gentleman to 
explain the real meaning of the axiom thus placed before us. 
"Now you see, boys, I dot a number of points on the board. 
Imagine these points in continued contiguity, and you have a 
line, which is the beginning and the constituent of all geometrical 
figures. Look, here, you have it ; " and with this he would 
chalk a line on the board. 4< Yon will see this line has one 
dimension length, to wit but it has neither width nor depth." 
Well, as for my own part, try hard as I might, I could not 
see it. In ciphering I had been taught by dear Herr Meier 
that no number of naughts could ever grow into aught, unless 
placed at the right hand of a common number. Here I was 
simply bid to believe in this, to me, incomprehensible axiom. 
It would have been so very easy to explain to me the why 
and wherefore, and make me take kindly to the study of this 
noble science. It was the same, or rather worse, in religious 
instruction. The gentleman was one of the densest and darkest 
and most bigoted of the Mucker community it has ever been 
my misfortune to meet. He was always striving to force upon 
us an unreasoning faith in the eternal divine truth of his own 
particular tenets, and the most damnable error and heresy of 
even the mildest dissent from his teaching and preaching. In 
his blatantly professed hatred of the Jews he was the typical 
forerunner of that blind zealot of the present day, Court Chaplain 
Stoecker. I keep strictly within the bounds of truth, when I 
state that this man, who with pseudo-humility would always 



32 REMINISCENCES OF 

speak of himself as the humblest follower of Christ, and deal 
ad nauseam in protestations of Christian charity, brotherly 
affection, and neighbourly love, taught us as one of the leading 
tenets of his faith, that the Jews were an accursed race, accursed 
by Almighty God, and that it was like unto flying in His face not 
to hate, despise, and vex them to the worst of our small ability. 
In but too many of the boys, thus grossly mistaught by such 
wretched zealots as this man, the bad seed sown fell, unhappily, 
on a fruitful soil, which could not but bring forth in time a 
luxuriant crop of the rankest weeds, throwing Germany back 
to the Dark Ages, and permitting such men as Stoecker, Eiippel, 
Henrici, and consorts to act as a power in the State; whilst 
neither the Emperor nor the Chancellor seems to have the 
earnest will to put a stop to the truly dangerous vagaries of 
these gentry. Those who sow the wind, or permit it to be sown, 
may live to reap the whirlwind and the hurricane. The perse- 
cutions of the Jews in Germany were many and fearful in 
the Middle Ages. To give but one instance: in 1349, the 
so-called Black Plague was ravaging the free Imperial and 
Episcopal City of Strasburg. The lamentable superstition of the 
Christian inhabitants blindly attributed this fearful disease to 
poisoning of the wells by the Jews ! Two thousand unhappy 
Israelites were, with true mediaeval cruelty, burnt alive in 
their own churchyard. Berthold of Bucheck, the enlightened 
Bishop of old Argentorat, forgetting or neglecting to exert 
himself adequately to save the wretched victims from their 
horrible fate. What mattered it ? Were they not of the accursed 
race ? Well, we are travelling back rather fast to these glorious 
days of old. 

And this self-same hollow-hearted, small-souled, and narrow- 
minded bigot, who thus grossly mistaught Christ's noble doctrine 
of universal charity that should tend to bind man to man in a 
holy brotherhood of love, was also our Professor of History ! 
History, of all things ! the science which, taken at its best, and 
handled by big-minded men, has been defined as a huge fabric of 
fiction, reared upon a sparse substratum of but imperfectly 
recorded and only half-understood facts, as a rule loosely and 
incongruously cemented together, and which, accordingly, im- 
peratively demands, at least, a philosophic mind, able and willing 
to winnow and sift the grain from the chaff. And ttus man had 
not an atom of philosophy in his arid, sterile composition ; besides 
that, beyond a bare collection of dry names and dates, he knew 
about as much of the living science of history as the mere 
.anatomist can pretend to know of the living body of man. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 33 

Old Strauch's " Breviarium Chronologicum " was his historic 
bible, which he was incessantly striving to force down our throats. 
We were made to chew over and over again the worthless stuff of 
Dionysius Petavius and other learned Boeotians anent the time 
and season of the creation in which year before Christ, and in 
what season of the year ; and we were authoritatively bid to 
believe that the world was created on the 26th day of October, 
3949 or 3983 B.C. for in this last particular we were graciously 
permitted to go with the great Dionysius or with Scaliger, as we 
might list. 

Hours upon hours of our precious time were foolishly thrown 
away upon an exhaustive study of the truly momentous question 
whether Adam and Eve saw the moon first cornicular before the 
first quarter, or whether they saw it first in its decrease ! . . . . 
as if it mattered a straw which way they might have seen it. 

How all this was calculated to train a young intelligence ! 

Wherever profane history happened to clash with what he held 
to be sacred history, the former had to go to the wall. The 
Hindoos and the Chinese, we were told, were unmitigated liars ; 
and what it was impossible to reconcile with the commonest 
modicum of common sense he bade us swallow as an article of 
faith quia impossibile. He hated all poets, but more particularly 
Shakespeare and Byron, of either of whom he certainly knew very 
little beyond the name ; and Lessing, Herder, Goethe, Burger, 
Wieland, and Schiller. His reading was rather limited, you see. 
Schiller's " Gods of Greece " he called a most blasphemous pro- 
duction, the author of which ought to have been flogged at the 
cart's tail. Voltaire was to him the incarnation of Antichrist ; he 
used to piously and devoutly thank Providence that he had never 
read a line of the infamous writings of that horrid villain. This 
may seem incredible in its naive stupidity, but it is strictly true. 
Many years after I had a hot discussion in London with a very 
dear friend of mine, now no more, upon the subject of Voltaire's 
" Philosophical Dictionary," which said friend utterly and uncom- 
promisingly condemned as Jblasphemous, obscene, infamous, lying, 
ignorant, and a full string of such-like epithets. I humbly 
ventured to dissent, suggesting that he had, most likely, only 
read an article here and there, and urging him to give the book 
and its author a fairer trial. " Read an article here and there ! " 
my friend shouted indignantly ; " why, sir, I thought you knew 
me better than to imagine I ever could or would read one word of 
such pestilential writings ! " 

My friend has now joined the ever-growing majority, but he 
lived to change his opinion upon this and a great many kindred 
subjects. He lived to swear by Auguste Comte, and died a 
confirmed Positivist. 



34 REMINISCENCES OF 

Return we to our Professor of History. In Ms appreciation 
of the relative value of historic sources from the first times of 
Christianity, he was ecclesiastically orthodox. "With him Con- 
stantine, although the murderer of his own nearest relations, 
including his eldest son, was the prototype of exalted goodness 
and piety; Constans, the cruel persecutor of Arians and Donatists, 
the shameless wallower in the lowest mud and mire of the dirtiest 
vices, was with him, as he had been with Athanasius and his crew, 
a blessed martyr ! The monster Clovis, the wholesale slayer of 
his own kindred, he who in the pursuit and accomplishment of 
his ambitious designs trampled upon every law of God and 
Nature, whose murderous hands no feeling of pity ever could 
stay, no fear of retribution ever restrain, the worthy progenitor 
of a line of princes fit to take the proudest place among the 
highest aristocracy of crime, to put to the blush the Neros, the 
Caligulas, the Domitians, the Caracallas of imperial Rome, and to 
rank with the Bourbons, the Hapsburgs, and the Tudors, was with 
our Professor a blessed instrument in the Almighty's hand to 
spread Christianity in the realm rapaciously stolen together by 
force and fraud. As a teacher of history this man was indeed a 
worthy follower of the worthy Bishop of Tours, who, while coolly 
recording the fearful catalogue of the crimes of his hero, piously 
informs us that success in all his undertakings was vouchsafed to 
Clovis by the Most High, and that his enemies were delivered 
up into his hands, because he walked with a sincere heart in 
the ways of the Lord, and did that which was right in His 
sight. 

On the other hand, no inherent elevation of character, no 
innate goodness of heart, no unassailable blamelessness of public 
and private life would ever be permitted to shield a non-Christian 
prince or ruler, or, for the matter of that, even a Christian who 
had ever incurred the enmity of the Church, from the wildest 
and vilest aspersions of this man. Had I not, most fortunately, 
had the teaching of a better and wiser school after, I tremble to 
think what I might have turned out in the end. For I believe it 
is the nature of the teaching of the boy that mostly tends to make 
or mar the man. 

Many years after a gentleman, apparently of most liberal mind 
and large views on social, political, and religious questions, placed 
the education of his son in my hands. The boy had been brought 
up at a so-called high school, where he had been taught very 
little indeed. The father trusted him unreservedly to my training, 
but he asked me on no account whatever to interfere in any way with 
the lad's religious belief. Now my young pupil, who indeed was 
brilliantly gifted, was of a most pertinaciously inquiring turn of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 35 

mind, and I fonnd it very difficult to satisfy him upon certain 
questions. Thus, he would persecute me with his insistance that 
I should explain to him how the different races of man could 
possibly have sprung from one single original pair. To get rid 
of his importunities, I at last told him in despair that the assump- 
tion of the descent of the whole human race from one original 
pair was a postulate of reason. I had soon occasion to wish I had 
kept my peace, and told the lad simply that the matter was so, 
and that it was no use whatever to inquire too curiously into it ; 
for I well-nigh lost the boy's teaching and the father's friendship 
I was, in fact, grievously taken to task for having thought- 
lessly, the father felt generously inclined to believe essayed 
to import reason into religion! Man is curiously constituted, 
you see. 

Geography was taught at this school somewhat after the same 
fashion, though by another master. Here also the dish of in- 
struction set before us had naught but bare bones on it names 
and figures, figures and names, which we had to get by rote, I 
cannot even say to learn by heart, for we truly had no heart in 
the matter, and there was precious little learning in the teacher, 
who seemed altogether incapable of intelligently conveying to our 
young understandings intelligible views of the science he was 
supposed to instruct us in. 

Goethe makes Goetz of Berlichingen ask his son a question 
concerning his estate of Jaxthausen, to which the boy briefly and 
glibly replies : " Jaxthausen on the Jaxt is a seigneurial manor 
which belongs to the lords of Berlichingen." "Who are the 
lords of Berlichingen ? " asks the iron-handed knight. The poor 
boy is unable to answer the question a plain proof that he has 
never been taught to think of what he is learning. We were 
taught geography after the same fashion. 

Verily, verily, when I think of these things, I could weep 
bitter tears of regret over the few precious sowing years of my 
life, of which I was literally robbed at this school. It has not been 
all my fault that I have not yielded a richer and better crop in 
the reaping season of my life. I cannot help fancying sometimes 
that the vile, indigestible lumber that was forced into me at this 
sham school must have affected my brain with intellectual 
dyspepsia. 

And, as if that delicate organ was not already sufficiently 
overburthened as things went, they must forsooth want to make 
me learn music and drawing, for either of which " indispensable 
branches of a liberal education," as they were pleased to express 
it, I had about as much natural aptitude as a cat has for playing 

D 2 



36 REMINISCENCES OF 

the fiddle. And I verily believe they wanted to commence in 
music with harmony and counterpoint ! 

Talk about one's school-days being the happiest time of life ! 
True, I had a happy school-life before I came to Burg, and after I 
had left this sham school. Often in after-life have I in bitter 
grief cried, " mihi prseteritos ! " but not these days at Burg. I 
would not live that part of my life over again nay, not to be 
made young once more. 

There was another branch of education which was grossly 
neglected at this school instruction in writing. In my school- 
days caligraphy was at a woful discount in all classical establish- 
ments. We were, in fact, taught to look upon a fair and legible 
handwriting as a trivial, nay, even a vulgar accomplishment. We 
had a writing-master at Burg, a most painstaking man, whom, I 
remember it now with deep compunction, we boys drove well-nigh 
to despair by our stupid pig-headed disinclination to be taught to 
write even legibly. Were we not young gentlemen intended for 
learned professions ? Why then should we strive to qualify our- 
selves for common clerkships ? This was what our worthy principal 
and his equally worthy assistant professors were in the habit of 
telling us. It was a cheap way, you see, of nattering our foolish 
vanity. And I am sorry to have to add that even at the good and 
true Alma Mater, to which I was sent afterwards, the same low 
appreciation of a good handwriting unhappily prevailed almost to 
the same extent. How often, in after-life, have I had occasion to 
curse this folly ! How many times have my crow's-feet and pot- 
hooks stood in the way of my advancement in life ? Why, I 
might have been a famous ailthor by this time, but that the 
readers to whom my manuscripts were referred would not take 
the trouble to decipher them. I might know the quartz to be 
auriferous, but they only found the stone inconveniently hard to 
crush. May I not attribute some, at least, of the misfortunes and 
disappointments of my life to the bitter curses heaped on my 
devoted head by unhappy compositors doomed to set up my 
" copy " ? True, printers like my writing when they once have 
been thoroughly initiated in its peculiarities only it takes them 
such a precious time to accomplish the feat ! 

At Linden nearly all the boys placed under the tender and 
gentle guidance of Herr Meier were unceasingly taught the 
great lesson of bearing and forbearing, and to strive to cultivate 
mutual gentleness and kindness. The roughest urchin there was 
a little gentleman in feeling compared with the set of small bullies 
among whom I found myself suddenly thrust. So my first intro- 
duction into actual public school life was rough and painful, and 
caused me many a bitter pang. True, it took the milksop out of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 37 

me, and, with my natural pluck and the pretty notion I had of 
turning my little fives to the best account, I soon managed to 
shake and fight myself into my proper groove among my com- 
panions. But the process had the evil effect of lowering me 
morally. I lost much of my natural gentleness and chivalrous 
feeling, and grew imperious and domineering. Weeds grow apace, 
unhappily. It is your downtrodden slave who makes the worst 
tyrant. Look how an ill-treated fag will treat the unhappy boy 
who, in course of time, has to serve his turn of fagship to the 
emancipated slave. 

As to monitors, prefects, prepositors, or by whatever name 
these vile excrescences of a most preposterously vicious system 
may go, there is barely one of them who is not a tyrant at heart, 
and also in deed, if not pretty sharply looked after. I happen to 
know a National School in a certain country-place in England, 
where the son of the master, aet. twelve, I think, a regular Wack- 
ford Squeers, jun., is entrusted by his father with extensive 
monitorial functions and powers, although he actually knows 
little more, if not even less, than the boys over whom he is 
appointed deputy-master. Much bigger boys have to " Sir" this 
brat, and he whacks them unmercifully whenever he gets a chance 
They know they must not dare to retaliate, poor fellows ! 

Luckily, even here, in this school at Burg, with its objection- 
able system of indifferent, unintellectual teaching, and its cruel 
btdlydom in full force and swing, there were two saving clauses, 
two redeeming features to wit, the stupid, brutal, and brutalising 
rule of birching, flogging, cuffing, and pinching unhappy children 
into learning and good behaviour was strictly and absolutely 
prohibited here ; and the still more monstrously hideous institu- 
tion of so-called monitors, etc., was altogether unknown. 

I would ask it to be borne in mind that this is not intended 
for an essay on education, but simply to give a few remembrances 
of my school life. 

I had been here a little more than a twelvemonth when I was 
suddenly summoned home to my father's deathbed. So nicely 
had Madame timed her summons to me that I arrived but just in 
time to see my only remaining parent pass away. I knelt by his 
bedside and covered his death-struck hand with passionate kisses 
and scalding tears. I saw an expression of intensest pain pass 
over his face ; he darted an agonised, appealing look at Ma dame 
and strove desperately to speak ; but his indistinct utterings were 
lost in the death-rattle. A few brief moments more, and it was 
all over ; and I was an orphan indeed. 

This sad event affected my prospects in life very materially. 



38 REMINISCENCES OF 

Of course, at the time I had no conception of this. How, indeed, 
was a boy little over twelve likely to trouble his mind about 
questions of succession and testamentary dispositions, however 
nearly they might toueh his interests. It was only years after 
that I could fully realise the extent of the injury done me by 
Madame. 

My dear departed mother, in her loving trust, had at the time 
of her marriage freely and unreservedly handed her whole fortune 
over to my father, who had now left all he had died possessed of 
except my dear mother's library unconditionally to Madame, 
simply expressing his confident trust that she, who had always 
loved his son so sincerely and truly (!) would act fairly and justly 
by the orphan. My mother's library, which she had inherited 
from an uncle a regular old bookworm and which contained 
some valuable old works, was the only thing left to me. 

Happily for poor me, I was not left absolutely dependent upon 
the loving justice and fairness of this woman, my maternal grand- 
father, who had died when I was barely four years old, having 
bequeathed to me the absolute reversion, after my mother's de- 
mise, of a handsome capital of 12,000, invested in the Prussian 
funds, more than amply sufficient to establish me comfortably in 
life. 

When a distant maternal relative asked Madame to make, at 
least, a small additional settlement upon me out of my mother's 
fortune, to which she had succeeded through my father's lament- 
able uxoriousness, she absolutely declined, pleading that her two 
sweet babies had no maternal grandfather to leave them money 
which was quite true. 

Had my father but rested content with practically disinherit- 
ing me, no very great and lasting harm might after all have been 
done me ; and the Pupillary Court would have appointed a proper 
guardian to watch over me and my interests ; but, unhappily, he 
had appointed me a guardian of his own, or rather Madame's, 
choice. 

The gentleman in question was a Prussian Privy Councillor of 
Legation, then on a diplomatic mission in Hanover, where he had 
first met Madame at a party. 

Madame's showy style of beauty, her agreeable French rattle, 
and her pretty prattle in broken German, favourably impressed 
the Councillor, who being a handsome man in the prime of life, 
of solid attainments and elegant manners, ditto-dittoed the lady. 

Madame, though a frivolous Frenchwoman, and passionately 
fond of the pleasures of life, had yet the making of a devotee in 
her. The Councillor, a prominent member of the great Mucker 
Community, that looked upon him as a shining Ught of piety in 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 39 

the land, speedily discerned this promising element in the lady. 
He found that Madame had considerable aptitude for religions 
development; so the acquaintance soon ripened into Christian 
intimacy ; and my father, who was ailing then, and who only saw 
with his wife's eyes, was made to believe in the goodness and 
sincere piety of this much-professing gentleman, whom thus he 
came to appoint my guardian, giving him the most extensive 
power, in fact, absolute discretion to do as he might list. I had 
bitter occasion after to wish he had let it alone. 

The funeral over, I was packed off back again to Burg, where 
I was kept at the old school until I had passed my fourteenth 
year. 

Meanwhile the pious Councillor, moved -no doubt by holy 
charity and gentle pity for the sad solitariness of the widow, the 
orphaned state of her children perhaps also (quis sine maculis ?) 
allured by her rich dower, manfully came forward to offer her his 
Christian heart to rest on, his pious hand to guide her through 
the perilous mazes of this wicked world in safety to the glorious 
inheritance of the just and righteous and strong in faith: and 
she accepted the offer; but to avoid the cavilling remarks of 
censorious society in Hanover, she transferred her Lares and 
Penates to Berlin. 

My guardian, who, being a man of discernment, at least, saw 
that I was worse than losing my time at Burg: so he sent 
me at last to the famous Klosterschule in Magdeburg, which 
was conducted at the time by Provost Eottger and Professor 
Solbrig, assisted by first-rate masters, all of them gentlemen 
and scholars, and admirable teachers. 

Instead of learning much at the sham school which I now 
left ao last, the very faculty of acquiring knowledge had been 
impaired in me there. Indeed, I had been brought so low 
that I passed with difficulty into the upper fifth form of the 
Klosterschule, whereas when coming from Meier's, I might have 
gained admission to the upper fourth form (the forms were 
counted from Sexta up to Prima and Selecta). Here, under 
most able and intelligent guidance, I soon made up for lost 
time, moving a little slowly at first, indeed, but more rapidly 
after through the eight intervening forms, up to Selecta, and 
passing my Abiturient or University ripeness examination ere 
I had much more than completed my eighteenth year. How- 
ever, while my rapid progress in learning gave thus the fullest 
satisfaction to the masters, and gained me the kind affection of 
the dear old rector, Professor Solbrig, my " behaviour," as they 
termed it in the "censures," sent to my guardian at the end 
of each term, was uni sono declared to be rather indifferent. 



40 EEMINISCENCES OF 

In fact, I am afraid I was a most mischievous young scamp. 
I know I somehow always was in hot water. I have a notion, 
however, that the recollections of most men brought up at 
public schools are pretty much to the same effect. 

When I was a few months over fifteen about a year after 
my admission to the Klosterschule I was duly confirmed in 
the true Protestant faith of my forefathers by Dr. Dennhardt, 
of the Holy Ghost Church, a most eloquent preacher and 
learned divine, then on the high road to the highest ecclesiastical 
preferments. Alas! some ten years after, I believe the poor 
man made a moral mistake, and had to leave the Church, of 
which he was truly a most brilliantly shining light and ornament. 
Years after I casually met him at Erfurt, where he had been 
appointed, by a liberal-minded government, Eector of the High 
School. At a still much later period in life I was told that 
he had, in his rectorial capacity, and also as chairman of some 
grand choral union, had to welcome Her Majesty of England 
when she came over to Germany on a visit to Gotha, and that 
the unforgiving unco' pious German Mucker element had suc- 
ceeded in poisoning Her Majesty's ear against him. I never 
learnt the rights of the affair. All I can say is that a better 
and a kinder-hearted man, and a truer Christian, than Dr- 
Dennhardt never adorned any Church; and that, barring his 
one unhappy transgression, his life was as pure, ay, purer 
most likely than that of most of his denigrators and assailers. 
I loved him dearly, and I deeply revere his memory. 

When I was going on fast for sixteen, I was invited to pass 
the Michaelmas vacation with a dear young chum of mine, Karl 
von S., the son of a general officer in the Prussian army, who 
at the time held a command in Magdeburg. I joyfully accepted 
the invitation, as it would dispense me from the necessity of 
having to pass my vacation at my guardian's, in Berlin. 

I had by this time come to look upon myself as a man, every 
inch of me. I had taken to braided velvet coats, and the regular 
College cap, with black, red, and gold border (which I had to 
wear on the sly), and heavy Cavalry Hessians with spurs, and 
a dress-suit, with extravagantly tall chimney-pot on Sundays ; 
and I kept assiduously soaping and razor-scraping my poor 
chin, cheeks, and upper-lip, in the sanguine hope that something 
like whiskers, moustachios, and beard might be coaxed out of 
these unhappy sections of my face; also, I was a passionate 
Turner or gymnast, and warmly given to athletic exercises in 
general and to the cultivation of beer. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 41 

Karl von S had an only sister, Amalia by name, a most 

charming girl of about nineteen, full of fun and frolic, and 
possessed with the very demon of mischief. 

Since my first love affair with little Olga I had kept heart- 
whole: might be I was a little fastidious and high in my standard 
of female charms. 

So soon, however, as Amalia rose on the horizon, to beam 
upon me in her resplendent beauty, I was once again undone ; I 
fell head over ears in love with this new divinity of mine. 

Ere eight days had passed away under the same roof with her, 
poesy's fine frenzy claimed me for her own, and I poured out the 
unrestrainable overflowings of my entranced heart in a couple of 
sonnets upon my angel's soft blue eyes and dark brows ; another 
sonnet upon her raven locks ; one upon her sweet mouth ; one on 
her pearly teeth ; one on her delicious Greek nose ; and two more, 
to wind up, upon her rosy lips, upper and lower one sonnet, as 
you see, for every day in the week, and two for Sunday. They 
were execrable compositions, vile attempts at sonnets. I know 
that now ; but at the time I believed them to be the acme of 
poetic perfection, and indeed I thought but small beer of Goethe 
and Schiller, with their neutral, lukewarm prosy lays, by the side 
of me and my impassioned strains ; and I am afraid Fraulein 
Amalia was somehow, approximately at least, of a similar opinion. 
Was I not singing the praises of her beauty ? Pretty girls, you 
see, are wondrously conceited. 

I marvelled much and contemptuously how a MAN like me 
could ever have seen aught to admire in a mere chit of a snub- 
nosed, red-haired girl. Poor Olga ! she really had a pretty 
turned -up nose and golden hair, and I had no business to try to 
misremember her so grossly and so ungratefully. But then you 
see I had to sacrifice my first love, to the very recollection of it 
upon the altar of my new passion, and I thought I might as well 
do the thing handsomely while I was about it. Well, well ! she 
served me out for it four years after, when she cut me dead in 
the Linden-tree Avenue at Berlin. Beyond my Petrarchian out- 
pourings, I never told my love to Amalia. It was too delicate 
a flower to bear ostentatious display ; and I was afraid, besides, 
Amalia might box my ears, as she sometimes would her brother's, 
most unmercifully. Yet I did not let concealment, like the worm 
in the bud, prey on my ruddy chubby cheek ; but I looked my 
love, and I conversed freely upon the sweetly-entrancing subject 
with Karl, who pledged his solemn word to me that no one but 
myself should ever dare to aspire to brother-in-lawship to him. 

My sweet mistress would occasionally reward my mutely-loud 
affection with a bewitching smile. She would stroke my long 



42 REMINISCENCES OF 

locks, call me St. John, and hold out a promise to me that if I 
would but do all her behests she would give me her fair hand 
to kiss. 

Olga had been more liberal in bestowing tokens of affection 
upon me ; but then Olga was only a chit of a child, whereas my 
Amalia was a full-grown young lady. My Amalia, alas ! Mine 
indeed ! In less than six months after, she jilted me, marrying 
an officer of twenty-five, if he was a day, who could not have 
composed a poem, let him try however hard for it. 

O fickleness, thy name is woman ! 

Well, I did all the behests, even the most perilous ones, of this 
beautiful incarnation of the demon of mischief ; and into many a^ 
scrape I got through her. 

There dwelt at the time in Magdeburg, in a large house in 
what is now called Berlin Street, but was then known as Cow 
Street, an old maiden lady of irreproachable life, only somewhat 
given to speak ill of her neighbours. A dear friend of Fraulein 
Amalia had somehow come to be talked about in a shameful, or 
rather shameless, way among a set of old tabbies. Poor girl, 
she had had to be sent to Carlsbad for the benefit of her health. 
In this most simple and most harmless circumstance said old 
tabbies had sought and found material for the concoction of a 
scandalous tale. You see the world is the same all over its- 
surface. When Miss Chudleigh complained to the Earl of 
Chesterfield that she, ay even she, had been made the subject 
of a gross calumny, and that her detractors had most liberally 
presented her with twins, the polite exquisite told her, by way of 
consolation, that he always made it a point never to believe more 
than half the world said. Now, these old tabbies preferred to 
believe and repeat more than twice as much as the world said. 
Fraulein von Gorlitz, the old maid in question, was one of the 
leaders of the set. She happened to mention the little tit-bit of 
scandal before Fraulein Amalia, who indignantly took up the 
cudgels for her absent mnch-wronged friend. " Well, my dear," 
said the frumpy old trumpet, " there must be something in it, 
you know, else no one, surely, would invent such a thing without 
having some foundation for it at least." This much nettled Miss 
Amalia, who came home fretting and fuming, and on evil thoughts 
intent. Karl had gone to fish at Bukan, then a suburban village 
close to Magdeburg, and I had been at gymnastics, dressed 
in tight-fitting yellow nankeen unmentionables and gymnastic 
jacket. 

Hardly had the young lady cast eyes upon me, when a wicked 
thought formed and shaped itself in her mind, and a wicked plofc 
burst forth ready made from her busy brain, the same as Minerva- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 43 

is fabled to have sprung fully armed from Jupiter's head. In 
a few rapid outlines she sketched her plot, and intimated to me 
her imperious will, which said will she made me pledge myself to 
execute promptly, diligently, and intelligently. She was resolved, 
she said, to give the scandal-mongering old maid practical proof 
that the wares she delighted so much to deal in could be manu- 
factured literally out of non-existent materials. 

So, having buttoned my gymnastic jacket over my college 
cap, I was speedily invested in one of Miss Amalia's old black 
gowns, which fitted me neatly, and had my long locks plaited 
Margaret fashion by my sweet mistress's fair fingers ; I was then 
sent forth on my evil errand, with a poke bonnet on my head, and 
the demon of mischief in my heart. 

The shades of evening were falling fast, as I wended my way 
trippingly and mincingly to Catherine Street, where Frau Winter 
dwelt, a reputed midwife. 

I rang her bell; she poked her head out of the first-floor 
window, requesting to know the occasion of the ringing. I told 
her, in a falsetto voice, that Fraulein von Gorlitz had been sud- 
denly taken and required her immediate presence and assistance, 
and that Medicinal Councillor, Doctor Weinschenk a renowned 
Magdeburg practitioner of the period would feel obliged if Frau 
Winter would bring along with her a monthly nurse, and some 
baby-linen, as no provision seemed to have been made for the 
interesting event. 

Well, the old lady nearly fell back with amazement and 
horror. What! Fraulein von Gorlitz! No, it could not be- 
it must be a mistake. " No," said I in falsetto with tears and 
sobs in my voice, "it is unhappily but too true. I have only 
this very morning entered the gnadigen Fraulein's service, and 
it is very sad for an innocent young girl like me to be sent on 
such errands. But make haste, dear Frau Winter. The doctor 
says there is no time to lose; and no wonder, considering her 
age." " Je, da muss man ja sein blaues Wunder erleben Wait, 
child, wait I am coming down. Du kannst meine Sachen 
tragen." And down the good woman came, exclaiming over 
and over again, "It is a blue wonder, a blue wonder," which 
it truly was, take it how you might. 

Now, I had not bargained for attending the midwife on 
her way to Cow Street, and I would have bolted, but that I 
caught a glimpse of Miss Amalia watching us from the Broadway 
corner ; so I stuck manfully to my colours, resignedly taking the 
bundle, and a formidable-looking Gampian implement, presenting 
the appearance of an exaggerated air-gun, which the midwife 
handed me to carry for her. Frau Winter called on the way 



44 REMINISCENCES OF 

upon the monthly nurse, whom she bade to follow us incon- 
tinently with the baby-linen, of which that good lady kept a 
store on hand, it would appear. 

Now, as mischief would have it, just as we were turning 
into Cow Street, and Fran Scharabatka, the monthly nurse, 
had come up with us, nearly out of breath, and I was preparing 
to hand her the things and to modestly retire, who should 
turn up, right in front of us, but the identical Fraulein Gorlitz ! 

Frau Winter, as I was within an ace of finding to my cost, 
was a woman of rapid conception, and of equally rapid action. 
She, without the least ado or hesitation, made a vicious grasp 
at my pendent plaits, which I eluded only by a miracle. 

Of course, I took instanter to my heels, with Frau Winter 
and Frau Scharabatka in full cry after me, like two raging 
fiends, leaving Fraulein Gorlitz standing in the street, transfixed 
with amazement. Like Hippomenes, I got a trifling start by 
judiciously dropping, first the bundle, then the other thing, which 
pursuing Atalanta and her handmaiden stopped to pick up. 

Now, Miss Amalia's gown was a very nice gown, no doubt, 
and imparted to me a look of prettiness and respectability com- 
bined ; but it had a most serious drawback at this precise time. 
It impeded my running. So, determined not to be caught and 
cufled by two furies, I manfully took and tucked the garment up 
to my waist, cutting along as it were for dear life, and in splendid 
style. Only the misfortune was, that deceived by the uncertain 
light of the oil-lamps, and misled by the dubious tint and the 
tight fit of my unmentionables, the passers-by took me to be an 
abandoned, shameless creature, and joined in the pursuit with a 
will. I tore down Cow Street like mad, up Piper's Hill and down 
on the other side into Holy Ghost Street, where I was nearly 
caught by old Schmidt, the precentor of Holy Ghost Church ; I just 
managed to escape into the narrow opening to St. Ann's Hospital, 
a row of almshouses, leading from Holy Ghost Street to Cow 
Street, and skirting the cemetery of Holy Ghost Church. As I 
was flying along, a brilliant thought struck me. With the 
rapidity of this identical thought, I literally threw myself over 
the wall into the churchyard, and lay down as quiet as a mouse, 
but for the beating of my heart, in the protecting gloom of 
a tall tombstone. I heard my pursuers run through the 
passage, with wild shouts after the shameless hussy. I soon 
divested myself of my disguise, wrapped the poke-bonnet up in 
the gown, and stowed the parcel away close to the wall inside. 
Then, having taken my college cap from under my jacket, and 
put it on my head, I climbed over the wall, and seeing the coast 
clear, everybody being in Cow Street, I walked boldly forward to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 45 

join the crowd of excited people who had meanwhile gathered 
before the precentor's house. 

Precentor Schmidt had no business to try to stop and catch 
a poor girl like me running away from her pursuers. Punish- 
ment was overtaking him now. 

By a strange coincidence, just at the very time when the 
pursuing crowd was bursting through St. Ann's passage into 
Cow Street, the precentor's daughter was seen, rather hurriedly 
walking up to the open door of her father's house, to slip in and 
shut the door after her. As she wore a black gown, a poke- 
bonnet, and pendent plaited tails, she, poor innocent, became in 
the eyes of the excited crowd, mad with blind passion, the shame- 
less hussy they all were in such hot pursuit of. Well, it took the 
father and Police Commissary Hennings, who had to be fetched, 
a long time to pacify the raging mob, and convince them that 
they were grievously mistaken. The police commissary could 
vouch for the fact that poor Miss Schmidt had been all that after- 
noon with his wife and daughters, and had, in fact, run home to 
fetch a roll of music. I looked on half-amused, half-sorrowful ; I 
was struck with speechless amazement when I beheld Fraulein 
Amalia condoling ay, condoling! with poor Fraulein Gorlitz, 
who, having evidently been " told all " by Frau Winter, was cry- 
ing as if her very heart would break. Nay, the wicked girl 
skilfully insinuated that it was one of the old maid's bosom 
friends that had played this nasty trick upon her ; and the old 
maid believed it, and swore to be even with that false friend. So 
soon as the crowd had dispersed, and things had resumed their 
natural aspect, I stole back to the churchyard, took up my parcel, 
and went home with it, carrying it under my arm. As a bounteous 
reward for my sufferings, and for the jeopardy I had been placed 
in by the young lady, she graciously permitted me to press my 
lips on her alabaster hand. 

Two days after we had to return to school. Through life I 
have had to bear my punishment for my share in the evil deed. 
I have ever since suffered from palpitation of the heart, brought on 
solely by my desperate run on that, to me, ever memorable night. 
The young lady, the contriver of all the mischief, was not punished 
at all. She had enjoyed the fun ; others had to pay the cost. Ifc 
is but too often thus in this world of ours. True poetic justice is 
meted out only in fiction. 

, I kept, a humble planet, stedfastly revolving if that is not a 
contradiction in term's round the sun of my adoration. All 
through autumn and winter I danced attendance on my divinity. 
I got a new dress-suit made expressly, and then took pre- 
ferentially to the chimney-pot of the period, that I might, when. 



46 REMINISCENCES OF 

ever I was at liberty, pass by her house, to catch a glimpse of her 
beauteous face, and do obeisance to her, happy if I could but 
see her smile upon me. I then really believed she was smiling : 
I found out after that she was laughing at me instead. So long 
,s the Elbe was frozen over, I was indefatigable in propelling her 
chair-sledge over the ice, and I stood no end of glasses of grog 
and punch to her. She bade me come, and I came ; she bade me 
go, and I went. Ere March had fully run its course she became 
ANOTHEII'S, and she invited me to the wedding ! "Well, I had to 
study hard at the time ; so I got easily over my second dis- 
appointment in love. There is no balm so healing for a wounded 
heart as work. 



A few months after I passed from Prima to Selecta. This 
was a great event in my life. I was proud of the achievement. 
I began to indulge in day-dreams of the happiness of University 
life, the glorious Libertas Academica of which I had heard so 
much, the independence of all control. Independence of control ! 
the most ardent aspiration of boyhood. How often in after-life 
have I had occasion to bitterly curse that same independence of 
control ! Had it but pleased Providence to leave me an affec- 
tionate father, a loving mother, or grant me at least a true- 
hearted kind guardian, how different might have been my way 
through life, and how different might have been its impending 
close ! But, as I have said before, might-have-beens are fruitless 
speculations. 

My guardian, who was a scholar at least, and took an interest 
in my scholastic career, graciously presented me with ten Dutch 
ducats, fresh from the Utrecht Mint. I had learnt by this time 
that everything provided for me by my guardian, under whatever 
head, was supplied from my own private means. Still I felt 
deeply grateful for the gift, and I grew at least ten inches taller 
in my own estimation, for that my transcendent talents and 
brilliant achievements had been thus highly appreciated by so 
competent a judge. What an insufferably conceited young puppy 
I was, to be sure! 

On the evening of the great day that my worth had been so 
gloriously recognised and rewarded by my guardian, I sued for 
and obtained an outing permission for self and the other five 
Selectans of the institution, to whom I gave a grand spread. 

I left my ten ducats behind, snugly reposing in my table- 
drawer, in a brand-new silk purse, expressly bought to keep 
them in. I looked upon these coins as so many orders pour le 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 47 

merite, and I would not have parted with them for five times 
their value in gold. 

Judge of my sad surprise, then, and of my deep indignation 
and grief, when on my return I found them gone, the empty purse 
alone being left. 

I kept awake all that night, fretting and fuming. Next 
morning I went, the first thing, to see the rector, Professor 
Solbrig. I told him what had happened. The old gentleman 
was thunderstruck. " Have you said anything about this 
wretched affair to anybody yet ? " he asked me, almost trem- 
blingly. "No, Sir Professor, I have not,". I replied. "Then 
breathe not a syllable about it to anyone. I will investigate the 
matter. Great God ! This touches the dearest interests of our 
beloved institution ! That I should have lived to see such awful 
deeds done in my times and under my rectorate ! " And the old 
man was actually wringing his hands. The sight of this good 
man's acute distress made an indescribable impression upon me. 
I devoutly wished the vile dross had been at the bottom of the 
sea rather than it should cause such grief to my venerated 
master. " Oh, dear Sir Professor," I cried, impulsively kissing 
his hand and bursting into tears, " Oh, dear Sir Professor, do not 
mind it ; I do not mind it a bit ; I do not, indeed, indeed ! Let it 
rest where it stands." "No, no, my boy," replied the rector, 
shaking his head, " that cannot be. I cannot let the matter rest. 
It must and shall be investigated. If there is a black sheep we 
must not allow the flock to be contaminated. I am afraid, I am 
afraid I suspect but that is no business of yours, my boy. 
Will you solemnly promise me to keep this most sad business 
concealed within your own bosom? Do not even let a hint 
escape your lips. Perhaps but never you mind." 

I promised the dear, good old rector to be guided entirely 
and absolutely by his wishes and behests, and went on through 
the day as if nothing had happened. 

After, when the affair was over, I was told in strictest con- 
fidence by the rector that one of the alumni, who had only been 
admitted last term, coming to us from another high school, had 
been detected in pilfering, and had been privately invited to 
leave, to avoid the disgrace of expulsion. The father, a landed 
proprietor, had entreated the kind-hearted rector of our institu- 
tion, to afford his son a chance of amendment. The rector had 
consented. The father, to punish his son, had absolutely stopped 
his pocket money a grievous mistake, as it turned out to be, for 
the temptation of my ten ducats had proved too strong for the 
unhappy lad, who, after some fencing and a faint denial, had 
ruefully confessed the theft to the rector. 



48 REMINISCENCES OF 

Professor Solbrig found himself in a most difficult position* 
The lad's father was a school friend of his, and the poor boy, 
bitterly repentant, prayed for mercy in heartbroken and heart- 
breaking accents. Expulsion from a Prussian school was a fearful 
punishment in my school days. I know not what it may be now. 
It was a most solemn act. The whole school, masters and boys, 
had to assemble in the great hall of the institution, where the 
culprit was forced to attend, to hear a Latin fulmination hurled 
at him from the high pulpit, which, if I remember aright, ended 
in these words : "Abi ad tuos parentes infelices abi cum 
infamia." I verily believe it is not too much to say that an 
unhappy lad thus expelled was practically branded for life. A 
man like our noble rector could not but feel this most acutely ; 
yet what was he to do ? "What could he do ? It was a fearful 
duty that devolved upon him ; still it was a duty. 

The titular head-master, Provost Rottger, being seriously ill 
at the time, the rector consulted with the pro-rector and the two 
chief assistant masters, who were generally called conventuals. 

The pro-rector was an austere man ; the first conventual was 
sternly severe where moral principles were concerned ; the second 
conventual, though not harsh by nature, thought it incumbent 
upon him to vote with his two colleagues. Expulsion then was 
the sentence decided on, to be kept secret, however, while the 
requisite preliminaries were being arranged by the authorities. 

So no one was permitted to know aught of the matter, not 
even the other masters. I saw that the rector's kind face was 
darkly clouded with grief and sorrow. To guard against pre- 
mature publicity, the lad was sent home temporarily to his 
parents, upon the pretext of illness. 

On the evening of the day after the dread resolution had been 
taken, I was at study in my room, when a lady, a stranger, came 
to see me an occurrence almost unprecedented in our institution. 
She was the mother of the unhappy lad. From her trembling 
lips I first heard the distressing fact. She sobbingly entreated 
me to show mercy to her poor child. I felt utterly wretched. In 
my heart 1 cursed the vile dross, the teterrima causa of all this 
misery ; and I cursed myself for my precipitancy in complaining 
of the loss of a few paltry pieces of coin. But what was to be 
done now ? Was I not absolutely powerless in the matter ? An 
idea struck me suddenly a stupid idea. I was only a foolish 
child after all. I told the poor mother that I must see the rector, 
and asked her to await my return. I ran to the professor's house, 
through the private passage leading to it from our institution, 
and I rushed into the good man's presence with counterfeited glee 
in my face " Oh, Sir Professor," I shouted, " I am so glad, so- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 49 

happy." I then added, stammeringly, " I have found the money. 
It was in an another dr drawer." You see at that time of 
my life a lie did not come easy to me. The rector looked at me 
half sternly and reprovingly, half softly. "Lie not, lad ! " he 
cried, severely. " Lying is the worst of vices, the devil's cardinal 
sin, the true mother of all crimes. Never commit a wrong that 
good may come of it, in your foolish notion. The end never 
justifies the means never!" "You, meant no harm, lad, I 
know," he added in a softer tone; "you would save your 
unhappy fellow-pupil. Your motive is good, but your way of 
proceeding is execrable ! " 

I sobbingly made a clean breast of it now, confessing to 
the good man how I had been tempted to try my wretched 
subterfuge; and I entreated his forgiveness for my trans- 
gression, which he granted me freely, even bidding me be of 
good cheer: he would see whether something might be done 
still. He instructed me to bring the unhappy mother to his 
house, where he soon joined us, with words of encouraging 
hope. He had meanwhile invited the other members of the 
board the pro-rector and the conventuals to meet him in 
the Consultation Hall. He took me along with him, and 
instructed me how to act. 

The rector introduced me to the board as a petitioner, and 
bade me state my case. I pleaded to the gentlemen present, 
my kind and good masters, to grant my earnest petition 
that they would indulgently drop all further proceedings in 
this unhappy matter of my lost ducats. I could never again 
enjoy an hour's comfort and happiness in my life if I must 
reproach myself with having, however remotely and unwillingly, 
been the cause of moral and social ruin to a fellow-pupil. I 
got warmer as I proceeded ; the deeply-excited, earnest feelings 
of my heart imparted the semblance of impassioned eloquence 
to my simple pleadings, and the pro-rector and the junior 
conventual declared for mercy. Not so, however, the senior 
conventual, who expressed his regret that, whatever the feelings 
of his heart, and however sincere and deep his sorrow, he yet 
deemed it his bounden duty as he must crave permission to 
think that it was of his colleagues also to carry out the 
resolution of the board; arrived at after mature deliberation. 
"Why, gentlemen colleagues," he said, "would you overlook 
the crime of this wretched lad ? Why remit his most deserved 
punishment ? Think you that mercy shown unto him will lead 
to his amendment? Has he not been spared before? How 
often, then, would you forgive him ? " 

My heart sank within me; but the noble old rector stood 

E 



50 REMINISCENCES OF 

forth the true disciple of the Divine Teacher. "Then came 
Peter to him," he quoted, with happy inspiration, "and said, 
Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive 
him ? Till seven times ? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto 
thee, Until seven times : but, Until seventy times seven ! n 
Then he wrestled with the stern man's scruples with the all- 
conquering force of heart-felt, heart-stirring eloquence. He 
victoriously refuted and overcame his specious objections ; and 
he pleaded to him for the pardon of the unhappy lad as a father 
would plead to snatch the imperilled life of his own son from 
the stern avenger. "Let us show mercy, as we would wish 
for mercy," he cried. "Is there one among us without sin, 
without transgression ? Nay, not one. Mercy, then, gentlemen, 
mercy to this repentant sinner ! Mercy to his unhappy, crushed 
father ! Mercy to his heart-broken mother, who is even now 
tremblingly awaiting our decision, that may send bright rays 
of gladness and hope into her sorely tried heart, or plunge her 
soul into the deepest depths of the darkest despair ! " 

Dr. H. was conquered. He gave way more fully even than 
the rector had dared to plead for with him. "Let us forgive 
the lad then," he said, deeply moved ; " and let us extend fullest 
forgiveness to him ; let us spare him even the intimation that he 
will have to seek another school." The other members of the 
board heartily responded to this appeal, the junior conventual 
repeating in a far-away way, semi-unconsciously, as it were, " Ay, 
indeed, who is there without sin?" A few brief years after, 
when I was a student at Berlin, I heard that Ms sin had found 
him out, unhappy man ! He, the solid and brilliant scholar, 
the officer who had valiantly fought for his country in the 
Liberation "War, had to leave the school and the land a deeply- 
disgraced man. 

Many long years after, in 1866, after the Seven Weeks' War, 
I saw a gentleman in Berlin, a gentleman in a high official 
position, whose face evoked in my memory dim recollections of 
times long past. I asked the gentleman's name of my excellent 
friend, Professor Tellkampf, with whom I was staying at the time. 

" Privy Councillor " was the reply; and I marvelled much at 

the strangeness of fate he and I I and he ! 

Hey for academic life and liberty ! Hey for that noble inde- 
pendence of all rational restraint and control, so sanguinely 
dreamt of, so eagerly, so impatiently awaited ! I had the fullest 
measure of it meted out to me. The greater the pity ! What did 
I do with it ? I sowed folly, and I have reaped the only crop that 
grain ever produced sorrow. I sowed tares ; I have reaped tears* 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 51 

My father had left the trusteeship of my funds absolutely in 
the hands of the man whom he had appointed my guardian, just 
the same as it had been entrusted to himself by my maternal 
grandfather. The one-third, if not even the one-fourth part, of 
the interest on my capital ought to have been more than amply 
sufficient to defray all expenses that could be properly and legiti- 
mately incurred by a young student. A word of kind advice, 
remonstrance, or less or more severe rebuke, where needed, 
might have sufficed to change the whole current of my after-life. 

I was an extravagant young fool. I had a foible for fine 
clothes, richly-bound books, jewellery, horses, and a few more 
luxuries of a similarly tawdry stamp ; kindly fostered by obliging 
tradesmen, who, had my guardian but been a true-hearted man, 
with the least affection for me in his heart, should have been 
checked or checkmated from the very outset of my academic 
career, but who instead found the Sir Privy Councillor always 
willing to redeem his ward's word, to honour his ward's signa- 
ture, although that ward was an infant in law and an infant in 
sense. Ay, evil-disposed tongues were wagging with plain 
insinuations that the good man was in the habit of levying a 
large discount or premium upon the bills sent in to him by a vile 
set of traders upon my inexperience and follies ; ay, I had after- 
wards reason even to fear that he had been more directly faithless 
in his trust. This is unduly anticipating ; but I may as well have 
done with the noisome subject. 

I will freely admit that my saintly guardian had essayed to 
gain me over to the true pietistic principles of the great Mucker 
community, of which he was so shining a light, so bright an 
ornament. Had I but properly responded to the call, things 
might have gone differently with me; but I did not respond. 
So the good man self -righteously resolved to wash his hands 
of me. The effort was made to win me to grace during my 
brief stay at my guardian's, ere I was entered as a student at 
Halle. 

I have reason to believe that Madame ay, even Madame 
had remonstrated with her saintly spouse, earnestly entreating 
him not to let me go to rack and ruin altogether unchecked and 
unwarned, but in vain. Tophet was to be my portion. Was not 
the death of all I had held dear a signal proof of the wrath of 
an offended, angry God P Yet I remained obdurate. Was it not 
clear, then, that I was foredoomed ? And would it not be flying 
in the face of Providence to make further efforts to rescue me 
from predestined perdition ? And if he must decline to interfere 
in future in any way with my spiritual affairs, would it not be 
a thankless and useless office to try to control in any way the 

E 2 



52 REMINISCENCES OF 

management of my so infinitely less important temporal matters ? 
No, no ; he was not going to stand between me and ultimate 
ruin, He would, instead, give me full swing and plenty of rope. 
The sooner such unregenerate wretches as I were sent to the devil 
the better. 

I went first to Halle, however, to study how to spend money 
to the least possible advantage, and the greatest possible harm to 
myself and others; how to drink beer and wine, and how to 
handle the rapier and the sword ; also, to shoot with the pistol 
and to play billiards nay, even for the period of my freshman- 
ship, to smoke, just to guard against the galling accusation of 
being a milksop. I gained a certain proficiency in this latter 
vicious habit, even to the achievement of the great feat of 
smoking two pipes or three cigars at one and the same time. 
Fortunately, however, I took no liking to it, and dropped it again, 
so soon as I had established my reputation. 

My other studies were strictly desultory. By fits and starts 
I dipped here and there in the sea of learning, roaming, like a 
roving bee, from one branch of human lore to another, taking 
a sip everywhere, of honey or of poison, as the case might be. 
Now and then I luckily chanced to pick up a few profitable 
grains that bore fruit in later years. But for the most part I 
gathered and garnered a vast and varied store of empty chaff, of 
worse than useless lumber, with which I crammed mind and 
memory, to the exclusion of sound and solid acquirements. 

The Kneipe (caupona) and the Fechtboden (fencing-room) had 
most of my time and solicitous attendance. 

If Heinrich Heine had wished to send the long-striding angel 
Gabriel for me, as he did for his good friend Eugene, he might 
safely have given his heavenly messenger the same directions 
where to find me, to wit 

Such' ihn nicht im Collegium, 
Such' ihn beim Glas Tokaier ; 
Und in der Kirche such' ihn nicht, 
Such' ihn bei Mamsell Meier. 

'What a pity that youth should be so much given to ape its elders 
in their foibles, and emulate them in their vices ! Well, well ! it 
is an old saying that youth will have its fling. I had mine, ay, 
several of them and they have flung me back on my back now, 
with sore limbs and aching bones. 

Oh ! mihi praeteritos referat si Jupiter annos. 

For more than two years I pursued my " studies " after this 
fashion, first in Halle, then in Leipzig, without being able to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 53 

make up my mind to select a special branch for my career in life. 
Time enough, I thought, to think of that ! I had not, of course, 
at that time, seen the great Richard Whately's sage advice, never 
to do to-day what you can possibly put off till to-morrow, as the 
chances are that you will be able to do it so much better then, or 
that you may not have to do it at all ; and Kobert and William 
Brough, whom in after-life I had the good fortune of num- 
bering among my best guides, philosophers, and friends, were 
not born yet, and could not therefore have bethought them of their 
projected " Emendation of British Proverbs," in which procrasti- 
nation figured conspicuously as the soul of business.* But you 
see it is the proud privilege of great minds to foresee future events 
to come, as dear Jeff Prowse's Nicholas had it ; so I acted in- 
tuitively upon the famous logician's advice and the B. B.'s 
amended proverb. 

At one time I felt half-inclined for Cameralia, at another for the 
law. Even philology had some attraction for me, though it was 
far, rery far, from my intention to ever tread the thorny path of 
the pedagogue. I did not then think of the noble healing art : 
the notion to trade and batten upon the ailments of my fellow- 
creatures was presented to my mind at a later period. 

It was at this time that the cacoethes scribendi first seized upon 
me. The wondrous tale of " Gloriola " ; " Moutezuma," a tragedy 
in five acts ; " One Kiss, Three Kicks," a farcical comedy in two 
acts ; " Arminius Liberator," a historic sketch ; and other works, 
issued from my facile and fertile juvenile pen. 

I was then a liberal patron indeed of the provision trade. 
Butter could afford to look up at the small shops in Halle and 
Leipzig, paper to wrap it up in by the ounce or the quarter-pound 
being plentifully supplied by me and other infants of genius. Ye 
gods ! What fustian I used to send forth into the world in those 
halcyon days ! at my own expense, mind ; for I am quite con- 
vinced in my mind now, that no 'cute publisher would have spent 

* Punctuality figured in this magnum opus of concentrated wisdom, 
to which I also contributed my humble share, as the thief of your own 
time for the benefit of another man's ; a dead flea on the nail was said 
to be better than two live ones in one's shirt (it was not a flea, indeed, 
but another apterous insect, which, though Sala once boldly introduced 
it in Household Words, I feel rather squeamish about letting it crawl 
over my pure pages). It must be a dirty shirt that will not bear turn- 
ing ; A bug in time breeds nine ; Much washing weareth away the skin ; 
It is a wise child that knoweth not its own father when he is grown old 
and feeble and helpless ; Pickle the rod, but spare the child ; Prosper 
and you need not work ; An' you but take care of the pounds, you may 
freely spend the pence ; You cannot make a sow's ear out of all the silk 
purses in the world, etc. 



54 REMINISCENCES OF 

a farthing upon my " copy ; " and I never, no never, knew one of 
the craft that was not considerably more than 'cute. 

I had fondly thought these sins of my youth were all of them 
long since dead and buried, when, imagine my amazement and 
horror, in one of my latest visits to Germany, a tattered copy of 
"Arminius Liberator" accidentally met my eyes at an antiquarian 
bookstall in Berlin, snugly reposing in a case along with many 
other books and pamphlets, no doubt of the same high stamp 
the entire lot being marked at six pfennige (one halfpenny English) 
each. Now, one would fancy that I would be delighted to meet 
my old acquaintance, and to spend the halfpenny nobly, for "auld 
lang syne." I did nothing of the kind, however, but turned away 
confused like a young maiden who pops unawares upon a dis- 
carded lover and walked off fast, almost afraid lest the " liberator" 
should forcibly detain me, and expose my disgrace to the public 
gaze. I also took to walking the mimic stage buskined. I did 
Othello and lago, Brutus and Cassius, Karlos and Posa, Karl and 
Franz Moor, indifferently very indifferently indeed and I im- 
partially always murdered them both ; which was, of course, what 
the author had clearly intended. 

Many long years after, and many long years since, eJieu! I 
murdered Moses, in the " School for Scandal," on a London stage ; 
but it was done for a charitable purpose. So the benevolent 
British public was graciously pleased to grant me a bill of 
indemnity, and my dear old friend John Oxenford went so far in 
his amical indulgence, that he bestowed upon me a line of appre- 
ciation in The Times. The stage fever fit was strong upon me in 
those days of my hot youth, and there is no telling but that I 
might have stuck to the buskin or taken to motley, sobering down 
in time, perchance, to general utility, had it not been for an 
accident a mere accident which threw me into the arms of 



Tired of Halle and Leipzig, I had just removed the seat of 
my studies to Berlin, when it happened on a certain day that 
two of my chums had an encounter with cavalry sabres, and 
one of them caught an ugly slashing cut over the face, which 
well-nigh severed his nose, and let daylight into his throat. 
The medical student (house-surgeon of the Charity Hospital), 
who was to have acted as " Paukdoctor," had somehow been 
hindered from attendance, and the duel (a mere wretched beer 
quarrel) had, foolishly, been permitted to come off notwith- 
standing. 

When I found myself face to face with this formidable slash, 
and saw my poor chum bleeding like a stuck pig and on the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 55 

point of fainting, and saw all the other fellows standing idly 
by, uselessly lamenting, an inspiration came upon me to do on 
my own hook (to use an expressive vulgarism) what was so 
urgently needed in the case. How I came to do it I cannot 
tell to the present day, but I managed somehow to stitch up 
the wound and dress it temporarily, until we could take our 
damaged friend to the hospital. 

Here the "great Councillor," the immortal Heim, an old 
man then, chanced to be present, who graciously condescended 
to approve of, what he was pleased to call, my presence of 
mind and my skill, and to warmly counsel me to embrace 
the medico-surgical career. 

The great man and truly he was one of the greatest as 
well as one of the best of men had himself been fortuitously 
led to embrace the pursuit, on which he was shedding such 
glorious lustre. He was the son of a village pastor, if my 
memory does not mislead me. When about twelve he happened 
to be birds'-nesting with some companions. One of them, 
unfortunately, had a fall from a tree, and broke his leg. The 
boy Heim, acting under the instant inspiration of his innate 
genius for surgery, set the injured limb, and bound it up, 
44 just the same as the most skilful surgeon could have done 
it" as the district physician declared when the "case" was 
brought to him. That gentleman strongly urged the father 
to make a doctor of his gifted son. 

Most young men are marvellously given to conceit. That 
wondrous Prince of Science the great Heim, had condescended 
to take notice of me. This was enough : I almost looked upon 
myself as material fit to fashion a second ^Esculapius out of, 
simply because I had stitched up a few inches of solution of 
continuity in a man's face. The rough rubs of life have taken 
the conceit pretty completely out of me; but in those days 
I was conceited ; yet, surely, I had no cause for it. I need 
not have dreaded lest I should amaze and anger High Jove 
by any display of my skill : the divuUa membra of Hippolytus 
would never have been reunited had I been called upon to 
essay the feat. Still at that time I exultingly thought I had 
found my groove at last. Alas! how often in life have I 
fancied the same thing, with just as little cause for it ! 

The affair of honour (!) which led to this decision of mine had 
been permitted to grow out of a wretched beer quarrel, pushed 
beyond all allowable limits by the wrongheadedness of one of the 
combatants of course not the one who had to pay the penalty. 
The inflicter of the wound was equally, of course, sorry, ay, deeply 
.sorry, that he had obstinately persisted in forcing matters to this 



56 REMINISCENCES OF 

unlucky issue ; he kissed the wounded face of his fallen foe, and 
bathed it with his tears which simply served to inflict additional 
pangs upon the sufferer; tears, as a rule, being no doubt a soothing 
balm for wounded hearts, but certainly not for wounded faces. 
Then there was this little trifle in the matter, that the poor face- 
slashed young fellow had to exchange the Church for the law. 
Now, in the former, a patron of his father's had promised him a 
presentation to a fat living, so soon as he should pass and be 
ordained ; whilst the law, on the other hand, had some ten years' 
semi-starvation in store for the young man, and at the end of that 
time a position and income less than half so snug and comfortable 
as the one for which the cut across the face disqualified him. 

I may as well mention here another " students' duel," which 
took place in Berlin about fifteen months after the little affair 
above narrated, and in which I was also personally concerned in 
the capacity of assistant to the professional friend who attended 
as surgeon. In no other way had I to do aught with or in the 
matter ; yet the fatal issue of the affair made a most sad im- 
pression upon me at the time, which the many years that have 
elapsed since then have not yet had sufficient power to efface 
from my mind and memory. 

A young fellow of Hermannstadt, in Transylvania, of Saxon 
descent, had come to Berlin to complete his studies. He was an 
only son. His parents were wealthy, and moved in a superior 
sphere of life. He was one of the best-natured fellows I ever met ; 
of a generous, noble disposition, only that he was a little hot and 
short-tempered, and perhaps unduly inclined to stand upon his 
dignity. Now we had in our more intimate set a law student 
whom I will here call Reimar, to guard against the chance of 
giving pain to any surviving member of the family the son of a 
distinguished Lutheran minister in Silesia. Reimar was a great 
favourite with all of us ; he was so full of fun and frolic, and so 
overflowing with wit and humour ; he was also wonderfully kind- 
hearted, only that occasionally, when in the vein, he would love 
to say caustic things, and indulge in biting sarcasm ; he was, in 
fact, overmuch given to quiz foes and friends alike, little recking 
how they might take it. 

One night nefasta nox he was on for chaff, unhappily 
choosing for his butt our Transylvanian, who was even more than 
usually touchy on this unlucky night. So matters proceeded 
between these two, crescendo from harmless jokes to barbed 
words, from trifling irritation to red-hot passion, until somewhere 
about midnight we found ourselves face to face with an impending 
pistol duel between these two right good fellows. 

Well, some old Burschen, who saw that in the present temper 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 57 

of both the intending combatants nothing could be done to stop 
the affair, sagely undertook the further management of it. We 
learnt afterwards in select committee that these kindly sons of 
our beloved Alma Mater had hit upon the same plan which the 
friends of Jeffrey and Moore had resorted to in the projected 
" deadly " encounter between these two great men at Chalk Farm 
in 1808, to prevent an untoward issue. 

But there seemed to be an occult adverse fate at work in this 
unhappy affair. Everything went wrong. The duel came off a 
short distance from Berlin, on the road to Potsdam. Two heavy 
long-barrelled cavalry pistols were the weapons chosen ; these 
were obligingly lent by a young student, who had surreptitiously 
"borrowed" them out of a collection of arms belonging to his 
father, a retired colonel of dragoons. The pistols were of a pattern 
anterior to the War of Liberation. To all appearances it would 
have been next to a miracle to hit anyone with either of them 
at twenty paces the distance at which the combatants were 
placed by their seconds. 

The two irate young men had cooled down to zero by this 
time, and it was easy to discern that they were heartily ashamed 
of their folly, and sincerely sorry. But they were lads of spirit, 
and punctilious upon the point of personal honour and we were 
all of us but foolish boys. 

So the preliminaries were duly proceeded with, and the 
weapons properly loaded by the seconds, with the trifling omis- 
sion of the bullets. When the word was given, we all saw both 
combatants, like sensible, good-hearted lads, fired high up in the 
air, but, by a strange fatality, the Transylvanian's pistol exploded 
in his hand, shattering the barrel to pieces, one of which struck 
the ill-starred youth through the right eye to the brain. He 
uttered a piercing shriek, swayed one brief instant to and fro, 
then fell forward dead. 

I never, so long as I have life, shall or can forget the harrow- 
ing scene which followed. Poor Reimar threw himself frantically 
upon the dead body, wildly calling curses down upon his own 
head for the atrocious murder of the kindest and dearest and best 
of friends. It was, indeed, long ere we could dissuade him from 
an insane notion that it was the bullet from his pistol which, 
although fired upward, the dark Spirit of Evil had conducted 
to his adversary's brain. There is a strange superstition widely 
spread among Germans, especially Northern, that the Powers of 
Hell have the full and free direction of every shot fired in unholy 
strife. When we succeeded at last in proving to him that the ill- 
starred victim had been killed by the explosion of his own 
weapon, it made little difference indeed in his self-accusations 



58 REMINISCENCES OF 

and self-revilings, which grew so fierce and intense that they 
actually made us fear for the poor fellow's sanity. 

Two most delicate and difficult tasks devolved upon us now 
the one, how to hush up this wretched affair, if it could any way 
be kept secret ; the other, how to soothe poor Eeimar's ravings. 
Well, Dr. Dieffenbach, who then held the high position of chief 
surgeon to the Charity Hospital, was a large-hearted man, who 
could feel for our extremely painful position. So when matters 
had been fully explained to him to the minutest detail, he nobly 
consented to throw over us the aegis of his personal responsibility. 
We all had to vow inviolable secrecy. Reimar was sent home 
to his parents in Silesia, to recover the natural tone and tension 
of his mind ; and the ill-fated Transylvanian's name figured some 
three weeks after among the " deaths " at the Charite. Accord- 
ing to the record, he had succumbed to acute inflammation of 
the brain. 

Unhappy Keimar ! He never recovered the shock to his high- 
strung nervous organisation. Within the year he died died by 
his own hand. Dei veniam Pater. 

Several years after, when assistant-surgeon in the French 
Army in Algiers, I was detached to the Jardin du Dey Hospital, 
some distance outside the Bab-el-Oued, or Gate of the West, to 
assist in the division of Dr. Antonini, who had Barracks I. and II. 
under his care. One day I was mysteriously summoned to 
" Moustapha Pasha," the quarters of the Foreign Legion, to meet 
my friend Eichacker, surgeon to the third battalion of that noble 
corps. 

Eichacker had sent for me to ask for my co-operation in a 
hush-up. 

There had been a fatal encotlnter that morning between two 
great masters of fence, Sergeant Beck of the Legion, and the 
maUre tfarmes of the 67th Regiment of Infantry, generally called 
Les Enfants de Paris, the then latest and last regiment on the 
French muster-roll. Beck had acted in the affair simply as the 
representative of fche maitre d'armes of the Legion, who was ill, 
and had had to be taken to the Caratine Hospital the day before. 

Beck was a splendid specimen of a fine young man, kind- 
hearted and high-spirited, who had endeared himself to all who 
knew him. It was said that he had been a lieutenant in the Baden 
service, but had been compelled to take refuge in France, in con- 
sequence of a fatal duel in which there had been some irregularity 
not of his seeking or making, but attributable entirely to his 
ill-starred antagonist. Personally I knew nothing of this. We 
had, indeed, plenty to do with our duties at the time, without need 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 59 

or leisure to indulge in mutual investigations of one another's 
antecedents. The tongue of rumour will, however, of course 
always be wagging. All I knew of him personally was that he 
was clever and accomplished, brave to rashness, and a perfect 
gentleman. He had volunteered to take the place of the disabled 
mattre d'armes of the Legion, and his ofier had been gladly 
accepted, as he was a finished swordsman. 

Let none boast of skill or strength. Poor Beck was run right 
through the chest, to the horror and grief of the lookers-on, and 
of his antagonist, a good-natured fellow in the main, who vowed 
he would give his right hand could he but be permitted to with- 
draw the fatal thrust. Semper idem Iwmo. Wickedness and folly 
first, vain regret after. 

Well, the mischief was done beyond recall or repair, and no 
court or commission of inquiry could mend matters. It was 
judged expedient, then, to hush the affair up. I consented of 
course, and I obtained my own chief's, Dr. Antonini's, permission 
to do as I listed. 

So we had the body of poor Beck taken to our mortuary in the 
Jardin du Dey, to be pitched into the quicklime pit next morning, 
along with some fifteen of our own "failures," for we had rather 
a busy time of it just then. 

Poor Beck ! He had not been quite two years in the Legion, 
yet he stood first on the list for promotion to the grade of sergeant- 
major, and he might legitimately hope to achieve the epaulet 
within another year. And now 

Well, no matter. A proper account of his decease had to be 
given, of course. Our bills of mortality had to be properly attended 
to ; so I kepb him on the book of Barrack I. for about three weeks, 
then I recorded his " death of fever." You see, it was all very 
simple, and saved a lot of troqj^s and annoyance to several most 
excellent fellows. In this wicked world of ours it is, perhaps, 
sometimes rather a good thing than otherwise that men should 
not be over austere. This very morning I read, with sorrow, of a 
minister of Christ's Gospel of mercy and charity, whose con- 
scientious scruples will not permit him to sign a petition for the 
reprieve of a condemned man. Poor Pharisee ! How I would 
pity him, but that in the wickedness of my heart I trust the Grea 
Father who made us all, and who loves us all, will be equally 
merciful to both poor sinners ! 

In 1871 I was in Elberfeld, as correspondent of The Aberdeen 
Free Press, and to bring out a work on the double standard of 
valuation, written by my friend Ernst Seyd, now, alas ! no more. 
In August I went over to Diisseldorf, on a visit to an artist friend 



60 REMINISCENCES OF 

of mine. Here I met a young officer of the 39th regiment, the 
Nether Rhenan Fusiliers, a handsome, accomplished young man, 
evidently much beloved by all who knew him. He was apparently 
in perfect health, and I was told that he was in good circum- 
stances, and had a brilliant career before him. Yet he looked 
to me deeply depressed. As he had seemingly taken kindly 
to me, I ventured to joke him upon the dolorous expression of 
his face, and I jestingly proffered my medical ministrations to 
him, when, with a look of ineffable sadness, he replied, " Ah ! 
doctor, you cannot administer to a mind diseased." A few days 
after I was thunderstruck when my Amphitryon told me tear- 
fully that Lieutenant Miiller had blown his brains out. I was at 
his funeral on the 17th of August. It was shown that the un- 
happy young man had died by his own hand, in obedience to the 
stern dictates of honour (?), in pursuance of the conditions of one 
of those equally infamous and stupid American duels which are 
a disgrace to our boasted civilisation. He had diced for his 
young life and lost. 

To return 

I took rather kindly to the great Councillor's suggestion, and 
went in warmly for anatomy, and physiology, and pathology, 
and therapeutics, and materia medica ; the rest to follow in due 
course. 

For about two years I worked with something of a will, and I 
made some progress accordingly in my studies. 

Unhappily, the further I advanced in them the less I came 
to like the profession, notwithstanding the illustrious men 
who were then adorning it in Berlin Heim, Hufeland, Eust, 
Wiebecke, Grafe, Dieffenbach, Wolf, and many more of a similar 
high stamp. 

The fact was, I, who had at first been very enthusiastic and 
ardent in my devotion to the healing art, soon came to lose all 
firm belief in it. I never was given to put faith in anything ; 
I always would insist upon demonstration, upon proof perceptible 
to my senses, convincing to my reason ; and here I found a 
lamentable lack of all tangible proof or demonstration. I may 
be permitted to plead, in explanation, if not in excuse of my 
scepticism, that at the time when I was essaying to enter, the 
humblest private, into the glorious ranks whom I then trustfully 
believed to be battling, as a united band of brothers, valiantly 
and intelligently with death and disease, the profession was split 
up, as it has indeed been from time immemorial from mediaeval 
times at least in contending schools and antagonistic systems. 

The followers of Brown were fighting fiercely with the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 61 

disciples of Broussais the former with their high-flown, high- 
wrought, and " high-falutin " theory of sthenic and asthenia 
disturbances of the equilibrium of health ; the latter with their, 
if 1 possible, still more recondite " surexcitation and adynamia," 
gastro-enteritic, Sangradian system. Bleeding, blistering, burn- 
ing, and drenching, were the great, nay almost the only means, 
ever dreamt of by the immense majority of the faculty to combat 
all sorts of ailments. 

Diseases, their nature, their causes, their effects, their more 
or less probable issue, were but most imperfectly understood 
then. 

Centuries ago Paracelsus, and his even greater successor, 
Van Helmont, had apparently succeeded in overthrowing at last 
the old humoral theory of Galenus and the Pergamese school, 
which, strengthened by the powerful accession of Avicenna and 
Ehazes, the founders of the Arabian school of medicine, had long 
held supreme sway ; and in establishing instead a new system 
of medicine based upon the more rational chemical theory. But 
it had once more come to this, that the work of these great men 
required to be done over again ; careful observation and rational 
experiment had come to be dubbed empiricism. 

Paracelsus had strenuously insisted in his time upon the 
indispensable and indissoluble connection between pharmacy 
and chemistry, maintaining that no one ignorant of chemistry 
and its processes could ever become a skilled and successful 
apothecary. How many " apothecaries " were there in my 
time possessing that intimate knowledge of chemistry which 
Paracelsus had declared to be so indispensable ? Look at the 
receipts in the old pharmacopoeias of that time, with their 
curious medley of agentia t adjuvantia, corrigentia y and vekicula, 
but too many of which show the most lamentable ignorance 
of the elementary principles of chemical combination. And 
what was chemistry in those days? What but a science yet 
in its first infancy, in Germany at least, where not one single 
university could boast the possession of that most indispensable 
of all requisites for sound and fruitful chemical investigation a 
laboratory P The most glorious branch of the science organic 
chemistry was only just being truly created then at Giessen 
by the genius of the immortal Liebig, who had come there fresh 
from the teachings of the illustrious Gay-Lussac, Yauquelin, 
Pelouze, and other eminent French chemists of the period. 

Here I must crave permission to insert a digression anent 
Liebig, which, I trust, the towering greatness of the man will be 
allowed to justify. 



62 REMINISCENCES OF 

Liebig was the son of a Darmstadt grocer. He was educated 
at the Darmstadt Gymnasium, conducted at the time by the 
learned Magister Johann Justus Storck. The boy, with his 
unconquerable predilection for the natural sciences acting over- 
poweringly on his mind, made but a poor hand at Latin, to 
the great distress and disgust of that stiff and starch pedagogue. 
Liebig was, in fact, one of the famous three dunces, solemnly 
declared to be so ex cathedrd by the numskull head of the 
Darmstadt Gymnasium, the other two being the illustrious 
Gervinus and the famous Kaup, both of whom I had the honour 
of knowing at a later period of my life. Liebig left the gym- 
nasium at fifteen; he was for the short period of ten months 
assistant to an apothecary at Heppenheim, where his astonishing 
laboratory operations so impressed his master and some friends 
of the latter that they procured his entry as a chemistry student 
at Bonn, whence he proceeded within two years to Erlangen. 
The Grand Duke Louis II. of Hesse sent him the year after 
to Paris (in 1822), where the above-named great professors of 
the science were his teachers, and Dumas, later on Minister of 
Agriculture in France, and Mitscherlich, subsequently holder 
of the chemical chair in the University of Berlin, his fellow- 
students. Alexander von Humboldt, whom, as well as his only 
a degree less celebrated brother William, I had the privilege 
of knowing during my stay at Berlin, heard young Liebig's 
paper on fulminate of silver read, at the French Academy of 
Sciences, and straightway obtained for the wondrous youth the 
appointment of Professor Extraordinary of Chemistry at the 
University of Giessen, in 1824. Two years after Giessen afforded 
the almost unprecedented sight of a young man barely twenty- 
three functioning as Professor Ordinary of Chemistry. 

Here in Giessen he established the first university laboratory 
in Germany, which soon attracted students from every part of 
Europe. Among Liebig's English pupils may be named Gregory, 
Johnston, Shenstone, Lyon Playfair, Sheridan Muspratt, Thomas 
Graham, late Master of the Mint, and my dear old friend Bullock, 
who is still to the fore, one of the most assiduous and intelligent 
workers in the arduous field, and one of the most modest and 
retiring men withal. 

Liebig was indeed the genial creator, the loving father and 
patient fosterer of this new science of organic chemistry a new 
science, almost undreamt of before his glorious advent ; a new 
science, infinitely fruitful, abounding in the richest blessings to 
the whole world the thoughtful practical student of Nature ; 
the discoverer and revealer of many marvellous mysteries of the 
universal mother of all things created ; the ingenious deviser of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 3 

an infinite variety of methods and appliances to enable man to 
pass even the most complex bodies through the alembic and the 
crucible, and to lead him thus, mayhap, through the portals of 
an all-resolving analysis into the sanctum of an all-forming 
synthesis ; the profound philosopher, who may truly be said to 
have been the first to unite in indissoluble bonds chemistry and 
physiology, and to place agriculture upon a sound and solid 
scientific basis ; the sage to whom the world is indebted for the 
dawn of rational views upon the all-important question of the 
nutrition of man and beast ; the potent magician, who bade the 
decaying power of Nature halt in its course, expelling, by one of 
the simplest processes, the great agent of putrefaction, and 
interposing against its re-entry the slender barrier of a thin 
sheet of tin fashioned into a case, closed but with a little solder, 
yet as impassable to that agent as the fabled seal of Solomon was 
of old held to be to the genii confined under its impress ; the 
beneficent inventor of the process of condensing and preserving 
milk, that most indispensable nutriment of infants, which by 
affording an unalterable and invariable and most perfect sub- 
stitute for the secretion of the mother's breast, has been the 
means of reducing by more than one-half the death-rate of infants 
brought up by hand. 

As I am writing this perhaps unconsciously long half-digres- 
sion, I feel proud and happy that I have been permitted, in the 
course of my labours, to place before the British public a verna- 
cular version of the great man's " Familiar Letters on Chemistry," 
and, by his own special desire, of the fifth and sixth editions of 
his great work on " Agricultural Chemistry."* 

* Like every great man who comes before the world with new and 
strange views upon any given matter, Liebig was violently and obsti- 
nately assailed by even some of his greatest contemporaries in chemistry. 
Dumas and Boussingault, for instance, made merry over his " new- 
fangled " theory of nutrition, and spoke sneeringly of la vache imagi- 
naire de M. Liebig. Berzelius assailed the Giessen Professor in unworthy 
terms in a series of articles entitled " Theories of Probabilities." Liebig 
could, and did, hold his own against these assailants. I took up the cudgels 
for him in my own small and feeble way. In England he was attacked 
chiefly not always over-generously, nor by any means over-rightly or 
sensibly by Messrs. Gilbert and Lawes, who at last stung him into a 
most cutting and biting reply, occupying some ten sheets of the preface 
to his " Agricultural Chemistry." I felt it infra dig. in the great man 
to descend into the polemic arena in this fashion, and I ventured to 
express my opinion to this effect to him, both direct and through 
Dr. Blyth of Cork, the nominal editor of the English version. I am 
happy to say that my remonstrances wore received by the great man in 
a fair and indulgent spirit, and that he freely consented to have the 
objectionable part of the preface expunged. 



64 REMINISCENCES OF 

But in the days when I was a student of medicine, organic 
chemistry had not yet come out of its swathing clothes. The 
vegeto-alkalies and their salts were barely dreamt of yet ; so the 
wondrous science of dosology, which is promising such splendid 
results in these latter days, remained of necessity still hidden in 
the dark lap of the future. Surgery in those days meant cutting 
and slashing and amputating limbs that might well have been 
saved ; ay, the time was not very far left behind yet when unfor- 
tunate sailors who had been heavily struck by ball or bullet in 
the glorious battles of the British navy had the bleeding stumps 
of their in but too many cases unnecessarily cut-and-sawed-off 
limbs plunged into boiling pitch to stop the bleeding, as a very 
old friend of mine, the late Mr. Watkins, Fellow of the London 
College of Surgeons, told me years ago. 

The methodus expectativa was altogether out of favour in 
the treatment of diseases, except with comparatively few wise 
physicians. So-called "heroic remedies" were with the great 
majority of the profession the order of the day. Hahnemann's 
" Organon of Medicine " had been published close upon twenty 
years ; yet his new system might still be said to be only just 
rising then on the medical horizon that serai-sensible craze, in 
which the formidable array of poisons of all kinds, forming the 
new, or rather the old, Materia Medica, modified and augmented, 
is more than thoroughly neutralised by the subtle conception of 
infinitesimals, and mysterious evolution of latent energy of action 
in medicinal agents by trituration and dilution, which in effect 
throws the ars medendi back upon the simple dietetic rules of 
Hippocrates, and gives to the famous Pindarean line anent the 
super-excellence of water, practically adopted and acted upon by 
the great healer of Cos, a new and much deeper and wider mean- 
ing, as, followed up to its last inevitable logical consequences, it 
makes water in the end the sole universal remedial agent the so 
long and so anxiously sought-after panacea for all ills afflicting 
our poor mortality. 

I am perfectly aware, of course, that it may plausibly be 
argued the fundamental doctrine of homoeopathy, similia similibus 
curantur, has nothing to do with the theory of infinite aqueous 
dilution; but it appears to me the retort to this is obvious. 
Hahnemann, at least, in his system of homoeopathy, has knit the 
two parts of his theory indissolubly together. Nay, I go further : 
I maintain that at the close of his career in Paris, when he would 
make a patient smell at a phial with a few sugar globules in it, 
moistened with a drop of the thirtieth dilution or tenth potenta- 
tion (!) of camphor, as an effective cure for a nervous headache, 
the old man had dropped the sanative principle of the similia 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 65 

simillbus altogether, and retained nothing of his original doctrine 
but the notion of infinite dilution. Really, he had had too much 
practice in physic not to know that in very truth the distinction 
between the apparently so extreme opposites of similia and 
contraria is a distinction without much of a practical difference, 
turning altogether upon the mere question of larger or smaller 
doses of medicinal agents, administered in concentrated or in 
dilute form. The merest tyro in physic knows that common salt 
applied dry on mucous membranes acts as a powerful irritant, 
whilst in a state of proper dilution it becomes a cooling and sooth- 
ing sedative ; that concentrated acids will curdle albumen, whilst 
in a dilute form they will act as resolvents upon coagulated white 
of egg ; that certain poisons and irritants will in small doses act 
as gentle stimulants on the brain, whilst in large doses they may 
bring on paralysis of the organ, etc. etc. 

And, after all this is said and done, is not this simple water or, 
if you will have it so, do-nothing system of Hahnemann, even 
when applied to the fullest imaginable extent, vastly preferable to 
the blue-pill and black-draught abomination ? to your formidable 
drastics your aloes and jalap, and other nastinesses ? or, worsfc 
of all, your horrible croton oil, to which some practitioners will 
desperately cling to the present day ? 

A very short time since I became acquainted with the medical 
officer of a certain charitable institution, where the inmates are 
almost forced to avail themselves of his skill and knowledge, and 
to submit to his directions a gentleman of sound acquirements 
in many ways, and kind-hearted withal. Well, this gentleman 
professed to me his devout and unshaken and unshakable belief 
in the efficacy of blue-pill and black-draught for the cure of most 
human ailments, and his profound admiration of croton oil as a 
sheet-anchor of salvation in desperate cases ! 

And is not the extremest far-niente system better than re- 
course to that worst master and worst servant in physic, mercury? 

Even now I cannot think without a shudder of a certain 
abominable decoction of a bewildering variety of roots and 
herbs, originally compounded by one Zitmann, a full M.D., 
but assuredly no healer, which was almost universally adopted 
in my days by the faculty in Germany. In this blessed decoction, 
in which sassafras, sarsaparilla, bardana, serpentaria Yirginiana, 
liquorice, and a variety of other so-called depuratives were 
ostentatiously paraded as a species of fair-looking front wall, 
behind which lurked a real "remedial" (!) agent, a dose of 
TWELVE grains of corrosive sublimate, to be introduced into the 
unhappy patient's frame within the brief space of nine days. 
Surely, surely, this was worse than downright murder. 



66 REMINISCENCES OF 

And may it not be fairly asked whether frequent periodical 
spongings of the body with water, as now prescribed by the 
faculty in the treatment of typhoid, are not vastly preferable to 
the dreadful copper-poisoning system so much in vogue of yore ? 
And will not openly professed direct Hydropathy achieve efficacious 
cures in very many instances ? 

In later years I had occasion to become more intimately 
acquainted with both the theory and the practice of Homoeo- 
pathy; and as I may, very likely, have to say something upon 
the subject hereafter, I think I had better drop any further 
remarks upon it here, save this, that I looked upon Homoeopathy 
then, as I continue to look upon it to this present day, as an 
immense and most beneficent stride in advance, compared to the 
thoroughly irrational bleeding, blistering, and drenching practice 
of the old school. 

Not that there were not in my days brilliant exceptions from 
the general run, such as Heim, for instance, Memeyer, the two 
Weinschenks* (father and son), Fritzsche, Dolhoff, Briiggemann, 
Wolf, Bust, Hufeland, Wiebecke, Krukenberg, and a host of 
other great men, who disdained to walk in the wretched beaten 
track of the schools, and were arduously striving instead for a 
better state of things. 

Heim, more especially, shone conspicuously in this way, though 
he was then, most unhappily, nearing the glorious close of his 
beneficent career. He was one of the most enlightened phvsicians 
and truest healers of the times. Nature had gifted him with the 
subtlest sense of smell, such as I have never met with in any 
other man in the course of a pretty long life. This wonderful 
gift enabled him to distinguish unfailingly among the specific 
smells characteristic of the several so-called exanthematic or 
eruptive diseases small-pox, measles, scarlatina, &c. 

No end of marvellous stories used to be told about this keen- 
ness of scent in the " Councillor," as he was almost universally 
called in Berlin. 

Some of them for instance, the one immediately subjoined 
here, which I heard long after my departure from Berlin, and 
when the illustrious man had departed this life were probably 
simply likely inventions upon the lene trovato principle. 

When Prince Frederick Charles was a child going on for 

* The younger Weinschenk, more especially, was one of the most 
rational physicians of his day. Oatmeal gruel and chamomile tea were 
about the only weapons with which he fought disease and death, leaving 
the rest to Nature. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN'. 67 

three, he was one day suddenly seized with a most alarming 
illness. His father, Prince Charles (lately deceased), a brother of 
the present Emperor of Germany, in a fearful state of anxiety 
about his darling little son, rushed about half -mad in search of 
the old " Councillor." He found him at a gay party, and took 
him at once along with him to the sick child's bedside. The 
father's eyes were anxiously fixed upon the great physician's 
slightly excited face. Judge of his amazement and indignation 
when the oracle said, in brief accents, " Child is drunk, Royal 
Highness." "Drunk!" exclaimed the Prince; "drunk! It 
appears to me, Sir Councillor, that you must be drunk. to indulge 
in such offensive folly ! " " The very thing, Highness," replied 
the physician, quite unmoved by the Prince's angry voice, knit 
brows, and flashing eyes; "you see, by comparing the beat of 
my pulse with that of the child, making due allowance for the 
difference in age, I arrive at the conclusion that the poor little 
fellow is considerably more drunk than I am. Where is the 
child's nurse?" The nurse was called in at once a pretty 
young girl in a state of great trepidation. "What have you 
given to the child, young woman ? " inquired the doctor some- 
what sternly. " Kiimmel Aquavit (Aquavitce cuminis, or caraway 
liqueur), I suppose ? " Well, it truly turned out that the young 
lady's sweetheart, a sergeant in the guards, had let the child, 
playing on the steps of the marble palace, have several long pulls 
at his liqueur flask, to keep him quiet, whilst he was warmly 
discussing the old question of love with his young woman. In 
a couple of hours the child was all right again. " What a mar- 
vellous man you are, Sir Councillor, in your diagnosis ! " said the 
wondering Prince. " One would hardly believe it possible to fix 
upon the true facts of the case, guided simply by the pulse ! " 
" Pulse ! Ha, ha ! " laughed the old Councillor. " Why, High- 
ness, I smelt the caraway the instant I entered the room." If 
this anecdote has a real foundation in it, the event must have 
happened three years before the Councillor's death ; which makes 
one doubt the accuracy of the tale. 

In his diagnosis Heim was indeed hardly ever at fault. His 
mode of treatment would have done honour to the most en- 
lightened and accomplished medical rationalist of the present day. 
It was a favourite saying of his 'that, whereas the ^Bsculapian 
method might be open to the objection of " excessive simplicity," 
our modern ways were certainly open to an infinitely stronger 
objection on the ground of their " exceedingly excessive " com- 
plexity; and that whereas the great Epidaurian went about 
healing the sick and wounded, attended only by a dog to lick 
sores, and a she-goat to supply milk for the cure of internal dis- 

F 2 



68 REMINISCENCES OF 

orders, it would require at least a waggon with eight horses to 
carry the curative arsenal of some of our modern healers. 

Heim was the most kind-hearted man I ever met with. In 
his charity he was truly catholic. He understood human weak- 
nesses. He would indulgently bear being bored with long strings 
of imaginary ailments even, which he contended had almost 
always some occult disorder or defect in the system underlying 
them ; nay, he mostly would manage to turn them to the best 
account for their treatment and possible removal. 

There was a certain Countess, of ancient lineage and very 
great wealth, who, having nought to trouble her, took to the 
" vapours," and became a positive martyr to them. There was 
nothing really the matter with her, apparently, yet she seemed 
and perhaps was always ailing, and complained most bit- 
terly of a bewildering variety of painful and dangerous 
symptoms. The eminent Hufeland, though he had written a 
textbook on the art of prolonging life (Makrobiotik), could 
apparently do nothing to prolong the noble lady's life, who 
declared herself to be pining away under that truly great 
physician's ministration. Well, Hufeland, tired out at last with 
incessant complainings of what he felt quite sure were simply the 
morbid imaginings of a woman disappointed in her married life 
she was childless bluntly told her a bit of his mind. There was 
nothing the matter with her ladyship, he declared, nothing but 
her own foolish fancies, and he must decline lending himself any 
longer to humouring her or her follies. 

Well, the lady came to consult Heim, who patiently listened to 
all she had to say ; then assumed a grave air, and declared her 
complaint most serious, and almost beyond the resources of the 
medical art. Still, he would do his very best for her ; and if she 
would only promise him to obey him absolutely in every way, he 
might make bold, he thought, to promise her a perfect cure. He 
gave her out of his own private pharmacy, for in desperate cases 
like hers he would never trust any apothecary a small box of 
pills and a diminutive phial filled with a most potent medicine ; 
the pills to be taken one at a time, upon an empty stomach, every 
morning, with one single drop of the mixture in a tumblerful of 
water to follow. On no consideration whatever must this dose 
ever be exceeded, on peril of fatal consequences. Strange to 
say, perhaps, her ladyship, whose formidable ailments even the 
eminent Hufeland had failed to assuage, got well so well, indeed, 
that she declared she had never felt better in her life, which was 
most satisfactory to all parties. Only that a dreadful fear took 
possession now of her and her somewhat uxorious husband. 
Imagine the great physician, who was only mortal after all, should 



AN OLD BOHEMLiN. 69 

suddenly die, without leaving the wondrous receipt behind. Why, 
where would the Countess be then in case of a relapse ? It was 
a horrid thought. So the poor Councillor was well-nigh driven 
out of his senses by pertinacious applications for the receipt, until 
he confided one day to the husband, under a promise of absolute 
discretion, that the precious pills were chalk and sugar gilt, and 
the marvellous mixture a drop of attar of roses in a quart of water. 
A plentiful supply was given at the same time to last the Countess 
for the remainder of her life, upon a most handsome computation 
of chances. Well, more than a year after, the Count, thinking his 
wife was perfectly restored to health now, in a confidential mood 
told her all about it. The sad result was that the unhappy woman 
took to her bed with her old ailment, and, having lost her con- 
fidence in the great Councillor, succumbed to her "fancies" within 
a few months after. 

In illustration of Heim's kindness of heart, I will venture to 
tell a last brief story here about this truly great and good man. 
On a pitch-dark, rainy, and stormy night, the Councillor was 
aroused from sleep, and urgently entreated by a working man to 
attend his wife in her confinement, as the midwife was afraid of a 
fatal issue. Heim went in his dressing-gown. He saved mother 
and child. The happy husband and father, overflowing with 
gratitude, thankfully offered the great physician any remunera- 
tion in his power. " I do not know," said the Councillor diffidently, 
" whether I am not asking you too much, my good fellow, on a 
nasty night like this ; but as you profess your willingness to 
serve me well, take your lantern and light me home." 

This most eminent physician died in 1834. I was in Algiers 
then. He was a very old man ; yet when the news of his demise 
reached me, I wept bitter tears of grief. I felt as if I had lost 
one of those nearest and dearest to me. His books showed that 
he had attended, without fee or reward of any kind, some four 
thousand patients annually. No wonder that half Berlin followed 
his mortal remains to their last resting-place lamenting. 

Hufeland, the author of the " System of Practical Medicine," 
and of the " Enchiridion Medicum," who was Heim's junior by 
some fifteen years or so, if my memory misleads me not, was 
an almost equally great and glorious character, both as a man 
and as a healer. There was not a solitary branch of the natural 
sciences in which Hufeland was not facile princeps. He was a 
man of immense knowledge, and of truly amazing energy and 
restless activity. His subtle and acute mind had penetrated 
deeply into the mysteries of Nature. As a teacher he occupied 
the foremost rank ; as a scientific writer he stood second to none. 
His " Enchiridion Medicum," more especially, the fruit of fifty 



70 REMINISCENCES OF 

years' practical experience in physic, which was published some 
six years after I had left Berlin, is a veritable treasure of medical 
lore. He died about a year after Heim. 

Then there was Eust, one of the most many-sided learned 
men of the day. He was Huf eland's junior by some thirteen or 
fourteen years, I believe, but he survived him only about five 
years. He had started in life as an engineer; subsequently, he 
had studied philology, the law, and other branches of learning ; 
and had finally taken to medicine, in which he was destined to 
achieve the very highest distinction and dignities. He was an 
Actual Privy Councillor, Surgeon-General-in-Chief of the Prussian 
Army, First Surgeon and Professor at the Berlin Charity Hospital, 
Inspector-General of Hospitals ; and about a year before I left 
Berlin, he had conferred upon him the supreme rank of President 
of the General Hospital Curatorium. Bust was a splendid teacher 
and most charming lecturer. 

And while medicine had thus, even in this period of tran- 
sition, in the deeply dark hour always preceding the dawn of 
another, better day, such bright and beneficent luminaries as 
these, surgery also was emerging rapidly and resplendently from 
the clouds of error that were then still obscuring its glorious orb. 
The night of mere cutting, slashing, and amputating was rapidly 
passing away, and the bright day of plastic and recuperative 
surgery was breaking fast. In Berlin, more especially, Grafe and 
Dieffenbach were exciting the admiration of the world by their 
wondrous performances in plastic surgery. 

Grafe, who during the War of Liberation had been divisional 
surgeon-general, was afterwards raised to the position of staff! 
surgeon-general, with colonel's rank in the army. He was 
Inspector- General and Administrator of the Berlin Hospitals, 
Professor of Surgery, and Director of Surgical Clinic. He was 
also one of the most eminent oculists of the time. He was of 
opinion that there was a last chance left of restoring to the late 
King of Hanover his eyesight, and he had made all necessary 
preparations for the great operation, which there could barely be 
a doubt in the minds of any who knew his immense knowledge of 
the organ of sight, and his wonderful operative skill, would have 
been performed with triumphant success by him, had not death 
carried him off suddenly a few days before the time fixed for the 
operation. He died at Hanover in 1840, at the comparatively 
early age of fifty-three. With him died poor King George's last 
hope of ever seeing the blessed light of day again. 

Dieffenbach also was one of my teachers. He was Grafe's 
junior in years, his equal in world-wide renown. His successes 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 71 

in plastic surgery were truly wonderful. He was appointed first 
surgeon to the Charity Hospital in the last year of my stay in 
Berlin 1830. He was then not much more than thirty-five. 
He was the most thoroughly practical lecturer and teacher I ever 
listened to. He also was unfortunately carried off at the compara- 
tively early age of fifty-three. He died at Berlin in 1847. He 
expired in a strange fashion, seated on a sofa, a Berlin friend 
of mine wrote to me at the time ; and his body remained warm 
and flexible for days after his apparent decease. If I remember 
aright, it was only on the eleventh day after that unmistakable 
signs of death could be observed. 

I had the good fortune of being present at several of the 
most marvellous performances in plastic surgery of Grafe and 
Dieffenbach.* 

But alas ! though I was thus privileged, as it were, to sit 
at the feet of such true Gamaliels, I was unable to profit prac- 
tically by their splendid lessons. Nature had not endowed me 
with all the qualities that are absolutely required to constitute 
the true surgeon. I had the light hand, perhaps, and even the 
tender womanly touch and the manual skill. I had studied 
anatomy to some purpose; but I lacked the lion's heart, the 
calm self-possession, requisite to impart the indispensable firm- 
ness and steadiness to the hand that has to guide the operating 
instruments. 

After my dear mother had once succeeded in eradicating 
my cruel propensities, I could hardly ever gain it over myself 
to inflict pain on others ; and in my university days there were 

* Many long years after the time I am writing about here, I 
casually saw a splendid specimen of plastic surgery, due to the wonder, 
ful skill of the most eminent successor of Grafe and Dieffenbach 
Langenbeck. An unhappy Prussian soldier had his nose carried right 
away, along with the sight of both eyes, by a gunshot at Sadowa, in 
1866. Langenbeck could not restore his sight, but he made him a 
really fine-looking nose out of the frontal muscles. I saw the unhappy 
man on the day of the triumphant entry of the victorious army into 
Berlin. They had given him a prominent seat on one of the tribunes 
erected on the Pariser Platz by the Brandenburg Gate. There he was 
seated with his young wife. Everything within the power of man had 
been done by Langenbeck, and by the King, and the Crown Prince, to 
afford the sufferer some slight consolation that might aid him to bear 
his irreparable loss. The young man was a good musician, I was told ; 
and the Crown Prince and Crown Princess had, with characteristic 
delicate kindness, presented him with a splendid piano-organ, that, 
in the words of Her Royal Highness, debarred from enjoying God's 
glorious creation through the sense of sight, he might yet find some 
compensation in treating his sense of hearing to the sweet harmony 
of sound springing forth under the creative touch of his fingera. 



72 REMINISCENCES OF 

no anaesthetics. In short, si parva magnis comparare licet, I was 
somewhat like unto the great Hunter, who dissected the dead 
with wondrous skill, yet never dared approach the living body 
with lancet, bistoury, scalpel, or saw. 

I could not even calmly look on to watch and study the modus 
operandi of the great surgeons of my time. I still remember 
with an involuntary shudder, the agony which I endured on 
one occasion, when Lisfranc, one of the most eminent French 
surgeons, was removing a large portion of one side of the 
face of a poor woman suffering from cancer of the part affected. 
It was a formidable operation, even for a man like Lisfranc. 
It lasted seven minutes by the clock, and necessitated the use 
of saw, chisel and hammer. The poor patient bore the operation 
with truly heroic calmness; a continuous low moan, and a 
nervous trembling all over, were the only indications she allowed 
to escape her of the fearful pain she must have been suffering, 
whilst I, a mere looker-on, nearly fainted. When a surgeon's 
assistant in the French army in Algiers, I had to nerve myself 
even for the performance of minor operations, and I am sadly 
afraid I was not quite as efficient an assistant at amputations and 
such-like serious operations as I might have been, had I had but 
a little more of the " lion " in me. My efficiency in this respect 
was by no means enhanced by the unconquerable conviction 
within me that, in some at least of our amputations, the poor 
fellows might safely have kept their limbs. I remember how 
awfully I was taken to task by one of my illustrious chiefs 
for an incautious remark of mine anent the cutting off of 
the lower extremities, considerably above the knee, of an un- 
happy sergeant-major who had been severely wounded in the 
capture of Bugia. The poor fellow bore the fearful operation with 
indomitable pluck, smoking his pipe all the time, and biting upon 
a leaden bullet, which was crushed into a shapeless mass by his 
teeth. He succumbed the day after, and I firmly believed at the 
time and I believe so even now that his limbs as well as his 
life might have been preserved, had my illustrious chief only 
been less renowned as a most skilful amputator. In the bitter- 
ness of my feeling I let an indignant remark escape me about the 
wanton cruelty inflicted upon the unhappy man. The Infirmier 
Major, or head of the male hospital attendants,* reported to the 

* We had no Sisters then in our hospitals in Algiers. I must candidly 
confess my after-experience in hospitals in France, under the manage- 
ment of religious sisterhoods, was but rarely of a nature to make me- 
wish for the employment of the latter in preference to male attendants, 
in military hospitals at least. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 79 

great man what I said, and the result was an indignant and most 
galling rebuke administered to poor me publicly by the angry 
chief. 

Even many, many long years after, when I had got more case- 
hardened and less nice, and when the beneficent use of anaesthetics 
had stripped the most formidable surgical operations of consider- 
ably more than half their terrors, I felt an involuntary sensation 
of semi-sickness and faintness creep over me when attending, 
with my dear friend Edward Draper, some of the late Sir William 
Fergasson's most wonderful operations at King's College HospitaL 
There was one operation, more especially, performed by that truly 
great surgeon, which made me positively shudder and shiver ; it 
was the removal of an enormous ovarian cyst, which happily 
turned out one of the very, very rare successes achieved up to- 
that time, at least, in that special line of beneficent surgery. 

I took my philosophical degree. I might as well have waited 
a year or two longer, and gone in for the Utriuayue Medicince 
Doctorate and my rigoroaum, or State examination, together. 
But I surely must have been predestined, from the very outset, 
never in my life to do the right thing at the right time. I was 
wonderfully vain then to be dubbed Doctor of Philosophy. I 
lived to see the utter hollowness of the empty degree, which I 
have seen tacked to the name of many a man that would have 
been puzzled to pass his examination for admission to the third, 
or even the fourth form of a second-rate German gymnasium. I 
may safely aver that the " doctor " has never yet put a meal into- 
my mouth. 

I am a curious compound in many ways and respects. In* 
dolence and industry seem to be intermixed in me in about equal 
proportions. Strange enough to say, perhaps, I seem to take just 
as kindly to work as to idleness, and there is really a surprising 
amount of latent working energy in me, which will at times 
convert me from a listless idler into one of the most enduring 
hard-workers. 

What follows here I have told once before in one of my 
numerous contributions to "Tinsleys' Magazine," with this differ- 
ence only, that in my tale in the magazine there is a mist of weird 
romance wrapped about the weird form of the bare fact as it 
actually happened to me, and as I will narrate it here. 

It was in winter, and it was very cold. I had one of my 
working fits upon me, and I was determined to get my anatomy 
practically up to examination point. 

I had been hard at it for several days. Now, at that time y 



74 REMINISCENCES OF 

and, indeed, even much later in life, I had a foolish habit of 
artificially stimulating my physical and mental faculties, when- 
ever exhausted through forced overwork, with large draughts of 
strong black coffee, which would nearly always seemingly produce 
the desired effect naturally at the cost of the healthy action of 
my brain which, however, at that time, I unfortunately either 
had not sense enough to see and comprehend, or rather was 
perversely determined to disregard. 

Our anatomical hall had just had a splendid windfall. A 
most beautiful young girl had died in our accident ward ; she 
had been stabbed to death, we understood, by her own father, in 
a fit of frenzy. The murderer had committed suicide after. 
There were no relatives or friends to claim the body for burial, 
so the cadaver of the poor murdered child was left to us for the 
benefit of science. I secured for my share moyennant finance, 
of course the splendidly shaped right arm, to prepare the nerves 
one of the most delicate operations in dissection. 

As the body could not be removed to the hall until evening, 
.and I wanted my work done before next morning, I bribed our 
Anatomiewdrter (attendant at the dissecting hall) to let me stay 
&11 night. It was a most stupid thing to attempt delicate nerve- 
work by candlelight, but I was foolishly bent upon having my 
own way. So I got the attendant to bring up four candlesticks, 
with an ample supply of half-pound tallow moulds of the period, 
a can of the strongest infusion of coffee, to keep me awake, and a 
quartern flask of pure cognac, just to take a sip now and then 
to warm my inside, as the hall was really very cold ; also some 
biscuits to eat with the cognac. 

The attendant assisted me to place the body and the arm in 
the proper position, supporting the limb by strong silken cords 
attached to nails in the ceiling above the table at which I was 
working. He then left me, with a request that I would lock the 
door after me when I had done, and put the key on the hook 
outside his room door, downstairs. 

I was alone alone with the dead, and the disjecta membra of 
the dead, lying dispersed here and there on the tables and slabs 
of the spacious hall. They disturbed me very little indeed ; I 
had even then in the course of my brief experience of life, seen so 
much of death, that neither the cause nor the effect gave me much 
trouble at the time. 

I worked on for hours, only putting down the scalpel for an 
instant to snuff the candles, or take a draught of coffee, or a small 
sip of cognac and a bite out of a biscuit. 

As I went on, wholly absorbed in my lugubrious task, I felt a 
curious sensation creeping over me. I suddenly seemed to be- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 75 

como aware of the development of a strange dualism within me. 
Two distinct consciousnesses, if the term is permissible, seemed 
to hold possession simultaneously of my mind; the one the 
clear perception of my actual surroundings, as conveyed to the 
brain through the senses ; the other, a kind of hazy, dreamy 
delusion, which seemed to be desperately striving to confuse this 
clear perception with imaginary shapes and fantastic sounds. 

There seemed to me to be a heavy struggle going on between 
these two opposing mental actions. As I was watching this 
struggle within me with intensest curiosity, I must have sus- 
pended my labour, and become wholly absorbed in the contem- 
plation of this strange phenomenon ; for when I suddenly started 
from my waking dream, the one consciousness within me found, 
in somewhat dubious and hazy way, that the candles had burnt 
down low, and that the long burning wicks gave an uncertain 
flickering light; whilst the other consciousness, which now 
seemed to assume more and more real shape and substance, 
strove to clothe all the dead bodies and fragments of deceased 
humanity with a horrible life and motion, causing them seemingly 
to advance threateningly upon me. Still, for a brief time I 
remained clearly conscious that this latter vision was simply a 
phantasmagoria a delusion of my overwrought brain. 

But soon this power of distinguishing between the reality and 
the delusion faded gradually from me. I suddenly fancied I saw 
the dead close in upon me, every severed limb or part now an 
entire and complete spectral body. I saw, as in a haze, how the 
flames of the candles were bending and twisting to reach the 
silken cords sustaining the arm suspended in the air ; but I had 
seemingly neither the power nor the will to interfere in any way. 
I heard, as in a dream, how my fellow-students, returning from 
the Kneipe, annoyed most likely at seeing the light still in the 
dissecting hall, were shouting loud pereats to the desecrator of 
the dead, as they were pleased to call me. But to the other 
consciousness within me, which was now with every passing 
minute gaining greater force and distinctness, these sounds were 
transferred to the dead, whom I heard fiercely and furiously 
accuse me of desecrating their remains and keeping them from 
their rest in the grave. To my intensest horror they were closing 
nearer and nearer around me. I felt their icy breath upon my 
fevered brow. I had no power of motion to escape from them, I 
suffered terribly. It was like a frightful nightmare. 

When the dead girl on the anatomical table before me had been 
brought into our accident ward, I had chanced to be there, and I 
had shown the dying child some little kindness. Now when the 
dread conviction was just becoming finally and indelibly stamped 



76 REMINISCENCES OF 

upon my mind that all was over, and that I was doomed to fall a 
victim to the fury of the dead around me, I wildly imagined, in 
the unspeakable terror of that moment, to appeal with the energy 
of despair to the girl, whose body also seemed to have assumed 
life and motion, to shield and save me who had been kind to her 
in her own last agony. 

Suddenly it seemed to me that she responded to my appeal. I 
saw her with uplifted arm wave back the horrible shadows. 
" Hence, away ! You shall not touch him," I heard her cry, in 
the delirium of my senses. " I will shield him with my body ! " 
Here, with the last gleam of my fast departing senses, I felt the 
uplifted arm drop upon my neck, when I finally lost consciousness, 
and fell down in a dead swoon. 

How long I remained in this lethargy I cannot say, of course, 
as all was a blank, until I seemed to awake to a kind of confused 
consciousness, in which I knew by some marvellous innermost 
impression that the struggle within me between the real and the 
imaginary was fast drawing to a close. I had a hazy notion, as 
in a dream, that the door was opened suddenly and noisily, that 
someone came in and rushed out again, leaving me lying help- 
less on the ground, with the leaden weight of the corpse upon 
me, the dead girl's arm upon my neck nearly strangling me. 
There was an inexpressibly strange phenomenal sense upon me of 
being lifted out of myself and carried to an immeasurable distance, 
from which, however, I seemed to see and hear in some hazy way 
what was taking place around me. 

In this strange state of what I think I cannot characterise 
more clearly than as " distant consciousness," I saw a number of 
indistinct figures rush in through the open door and crowd 
around me. I saw and felt, with an indescribable relief, how the 
corpse was lifted off me. I felt strong arms raising me from the 
ground. I felt how I was carried out of the hall, and downstairs 
by several men ; how I was placed on a bed. Then my senses 
left me once more. When I awoke again to consciousness it was 
broad daylight. I found myself in the attendant's bed. Professor 
Wolf was anxiously bending over me. " Where am I ? " I feebly, 
cried. Then, taking in all at a glance, the full recollection of the 
terrible nightmare burst upon me. I shuddered ; yet so blessed 
was the relief of my awaking, that I joyfully exclaimed, "Thank 
God ! it was but a horrible dream ! " The Professor's face cleared. 
"Yes," he said in grave accents, "you may thank Providence 
that you have been permitted to escape with a simple albeit 
terrible lesson. With your nervous organisation, it is indeed 
a mercy that the consequences of your rashness have not ended in 
madness ! " I felt the Professor was right, so I held my peace, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 77 

glad and grateful indeed that in a few hours I recovered 
sufficiently to walk to my own place of abode. 

I have lived many a long year since then, and I have tested 
the power of a variety of drugs to steal away or confuse the 
senses. I have smoked opium, inhaled laughing gas, tried sul- 
phuric ether and chloroform, Chateau d'Yquem and Champagne 
(in pretty stiffish doses), even a combination of Markobrunner 
with Erlanger beer of extra strength which feat I do not 
recommend for imitation, mind; nay, I have repeatedly taken 
hachich the last time, I remember, in company with my most 
dear, now departed friend, James Lowe, then editor of the 
" Critic ; " but never again have I experienced anything even 
most remotely approaching the awful delusions of that terrible 
night. 

I was ailing for weeks, ay, for months, after. My nerves 
were wofully shaken. Acting upon the advice of Professor 
Wolf and of the great Councillor, who was pleased to take a warm 
and benevolent interest in me, I gave up all attempts at mental 
exertion of any kind. I was always just the sort of chap to 
do this negative work with a will, though it never would in 
the long run suit the natural restlessness of my mind. However, 
as I did not get well quite so fast as I wished, I determined 
upon travel, my favourite pursuit in life. Every year of the 
four which I had passed now as a student in Halle, Leipzig, 
and Berlin, I had devoted a little above four months to footing 
it through Germany in every direction, paying occasional visits 
also to the eastern part of France. I had walked to every 
German university, from Konigsberg in the extreme east to 
Heidelberg in the far west. Even Strasburg, which was still 
politically and statistically placed in France, I had visited more 
than once. 

A few years later on I took to walking through France in 
every direction, only rarely availing myself of a lift casually 
offered to the sunburnt wayfarer by some country gentleman 
or farmer, and even then rather for company's sake than to get 
a short rest. 

I look upon foot-journeying as the only real travelling enjoy- 
ment man may have in life. The old stage-coaches, and the 
so-called French diligences and measagerics, as well as the postal 
conveyances, so much admired in days of yore for their rapidity 
and comfort, come next to it, though a long way after, in 
my estimation. The present mode of travelling by rail and 
steamer, though almost universally called travelling, is, in my 
humble opinion, not traveliing at all, in the proper sense of 



78 REMINISCENCES OF 

the term, but simply more or less rapid motion from place to 
place. 

O ye gods ! how I enjoyed my peregrinations over the face 
of the earth in the olden days ! Talk of the wretched fate of the 
Wandering Jew ! Wretched, indeed ! Why, what pleasure can 
there be greater in this wonderfully jejune world of ours than 
to go anywhere you like and have to stay nowhere longer than 
you like ? Long years after, I stumbled, in the course of my 
desultory reading, upon Geibel's " Wanderlied." Were I a poet, 
as Geibel is, I could feelingly have composed the concluding 
stanza : 

O Wandern, Wandern, du f reie Burschenlust ! 

Da wehet Gotter Odem so frisch in die Brust ; 

Da singet und jauchzet das Herz zum Himmerszelfc ; 

Wie bist du doch so schon, du weite, weite Welt! 



When I came to Berlin to study, my guardian was at Copen- 
hagen, on a mission to the Danish Court. From there he went 
to Frankfort-on-the-Maine, taking Madame and my half-sisters 
along with him. Had the family been resident at the time in 
Berlin, I would certainly not have gone there, but would have 
chosen Gottingen or Bonn instead. 

I now was informed that the Councillor was coming back to 
the Prussian capital, where he was likely to stay for some years. 
This information decided me to go to Strasburg, Montpellier, 
and Paris, to study the noble healing art at those famous seats of 
learning. So I applied to my guardian for the necessary funds, 
which he at once supplied liberally, remarking at the time, with 
an ugly sneer, that I had arrived now at years of discretion, and 
must certainly be the most competent judge of what was best for 
me. He was happy to say, he added, that in another year I 
would come of age, when all his concern in my affairs would be 
at an end. He would only advise me to study hard, that I might 
have something to fall back upon in case of need. However, 
his sneers and the ill-feeling he obviously bore me troubled me 
but little. 

Before proceeding to France, I resolved to take a run through 
Brandenburg, Saxony, Hanover, and Ehineland-Westphalia. I 
reached Aix-la-Chapelle in due course of time, in June, and 
took up my quarters at the Koman Emperor Hotel, in Ursuline 
Street. 

In those days, and, indeed, for many years after, the burial 
city of Charlemagne had the privilege granted it of keeping a 
gambling hell for the benefit of its poor. 

Tons lea goilts sont dans la nature which I would translate, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 79 

rather freely perhaps, " The germ of every vice is implanted in 
man." I who, Heaven knows, have in me, as it is, already an 
amply sufficient assortment of the article, might also have de- 
veloped in time into a very pretty specimen of a gambler, had it 
not been for a most salutary deterrent lesson, administered to ma 
in the very nick of time. 

As I was strolling about the ancient city on the morning 
after my arrival, I passed, or rather paused, before the place 
where the municipal fathers had spread their net, for the benefit 
of the poor. 

I had at the time some 200 in gold in my pocket, so I could 
not look upon myself as quite poor; and I ought therefore to 
have seen that said net was not spread for my benefit exactly y 
rather the other way. 

Well, I had never yet tried my hand at a real game of chance. 
I had always manfully confined my playing to billiards, whist, 
and solo, and always for very low stakes ; as I had, thank God ! 
sufficient brain and heart to know and feel that most of those 
against whom I pitted myself in these games could not afford 
to lose. 

Moved now by my unconquerable wish to try and test all 
things, I boldly walked into the place, to try my luck in a small 
way at rouge et noir and roulette. Strange to relate, perhaps, I 
won. I won stake after stake. I played high, as high as the 
bank allowed. I won largely. I went to the roulette table, and 
there also I added considerably to my winnings. When the time 
arrived for closing the hall or hell, whichever way you like to 
take it I left the place with carriage erect, step elastic, and mien 
elate, and some nine hundred louis d'or clear winnings in my 
preternaturally extended pockets. Altogether, I had thus close 
upon a thousand pounds available in my possession. 

I always was a wise child in intention, as I have shown in 
my life over and over again, and as I brilliantly demonstrated on 
this occasion also. Of course I was not going to try fickle fortune 
again ; I was determined to stick to my winnings. But, having 
read in my Byron that there were in gambling two pleasures for 
one's choosing the one being winning, to wit ; the other, losing ; 
and as I had now enjoyed the pleasure of winning, I thought I 
might as well have a try for the other pleasure on a small scale, 
of course. Should fortune choose to baulk me in my wish, there 
would certainly be no harm done, as I should be only the richer 
for it. 

So I left my money in the hotel, carefully locked up in the 
cabinet in my room, and proceeded with only twenty louis in my 
pocket to the hall, open now for the afternoon session. I dropped 



80 REMINISCENCES OF 

my twenty louis very fast, and might have been satisfied now 
with my twofold experience. 

But it so happened that when the last louis had been raked in 
I mentally staked twenty louis upon the next deal, which I won, 
and forty louis upon the deal after, which I won also ; then twenty 
louis again upon the third deal, winning again, and so on seven 
times running. Of course, as the bank did not hold against 
mental stakes, my marvellous luck brought me nothing ; but it 
was an unmistakable proof to me that, had I but not left my 
money at home, like an idiot, I must have won largely again. So 
I went back to the hotel Need I go on ? Before the clock had 
struck eleven that night, when the cursed hell closed, I had lost 
every louis of my morning's winnings, together with every louis 
in my pocket, and my watch and chain, rings and studs, and 
sleeve links to boot. 

You see I was wondrously fond of jewellery in those days, 
taking in this after my poor father, who would occasionally look 
like a perambulating jeweller's show window. In after years I 
got rid of this propensity also, owing, in a great measure, to the 
sensible example set me by a friend of mine, a London, stock- 
broker, a member of the Exchange, who made it a point to dress 
rather shabbily, and to eschew the least display of jewellery. His 
watch he carried in his waistcoat pocket, without chain ; and I 
hardly ever saw him take it out in company. He told me frankly 
that a man in his position, who had of necessity to gamble a good 
deal, might often come to be hard pressed for money, and that if 
he had a fair store of jewellery about him, he might have to raise 
money upon it; and in that case everybody would, of course, 
remark the absence of chain, rings, diamond studs, etc., and draw 
therefrom conclusions damaging to the party's credit. " You see, 
my friend," he said to me, " as I am known to be pretty well-to- 
do, my shabbiness is taken for eccentricity. So when a bad 
speculation cripples me, as will now and then happen to members 
of the Stock Exchange, my credit remains unimpaired, and I 
have a chance of recovery." Dear old boy ! the railway panic 
broke him ; and though he manfully stuck to his colours to the 
last, he had, in the end, to waddle off, a lame duck. 

He once surprised and amused me much by a most daring 
financial tour de force. It was at the time when the Government 
were asking for tenders for the eight million pounds sterling 
Irish Famine Belief Loan. I met him accidentally in the City. 
He was in a very excited state of mind ; he asked me to lend him 
a shilling. Unfortunately, I had come out without my purse, as 
the saying is, to speak with Mrs. Brown. I offered, however, to 
run to the translation office, where I was working at the time, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 81 

and get him the money. " No time, my boy, to wait for that," 
cried he ; " so here goes come along." And he coolly walked 
into the nearest pawnbroker's and took off his waistcoat. He 
raised a shilling on it ; bought paper, envelope, and stamp for 
a letter, and went into a coffee-shop, where he sat down and 
offered the Government to lend them eight million pounds 
sterling on a very low tender. " I have calculated the matter 
to a nicety. I think," said he, "that most likely there will be 
a full per cent, premium in a few days, and I easily can get 
Rothschild to take the burden off my shoulders, and allow me a 
quarter per cent., which will be a nice little sum of twenty 
thousand pounds in my pocket. You see, my boy, there is 
a deal of chance in financial operations ; but there is calculation 
too, and I think you may trust me for calculating power." 

Well, my poor friend's tender was only one-sixteenth per 
cent, above Rothschild's so the latter got the loan. Had he 
just tendered one-eighth per cent, lower, he would have had the 
loan, which some three days after stood not merely one, but one 
and a-half per cent, premium in the market. 

But as matters had turned out against him, he had to waddle 
poor fellow ! He tried his hand at many things after. Life is 
a game of chance and chances ; and the dice fell always against 
him, somehow. He is now at rest sit terra levis. 

I had to borrow money of the hotel-keeper to go to Frankfort 
for a fresh supply of funds from my guardian, who happened to 
be there still. He gave me, without demur, what I asked, con- 
tenting himself with telling me grimly that I was going fast, 
faster even than he had thought I would go. However, that was 
my look-out, not his. 

It was a costly lesson rather ; but it was a very effective one ; 
it proved a caution for life to me. I have never gambled since, 
although I have been in no end of hells occasionally even with 
fifty or sixty pounds in my pocket. Twice in my after-life I have 
been to the trente-a-quarante and roulette tables, with a personal 
interest in the game, but with no stake of mine in it. 

" I write what's uppermost, without delay," is the initiatory 
motto of these reminiscences, which I have said at the outset 
are simply loose leaves from a long life's ledger, culled here and 
there, almost at random, and without strict regard to chrono- 
logical order. Chronology is no doubt a very material part of 
history ; still it does not of itself constitute the science, which 
may even stand independent of it, in a great measure at least. 
Though I have, indeed, always taken note of the events of my 

o 



82 REMINISCENCES OF 

career as they occurred, I never took notes of them. Having 
never kept a diary, then, I cannot well be expected to write these 
reminiscences diary-fashion, and must even crave permission to 
insert here a few episodes of later years, which happen to bear 
more or less upon the subject of gambling and speculating. 

I know not whether many of my readers remember poor Gale, 
the aeronaut, who met his death some thirty years ago in a 
balloon ascent at Bordeaux, and whose body was half eaten by 
wild dogs in a neighbouring forest. 

I knew the lieutenant very well indeed, and about a year or 
so before his last fatal trip, I had devised a magnificent scheme 
for our joint benefit, as well as for that of a dear young friend of 
mine who has since then achieved greatness and renown, and 
ranks now a star of the first magnitude in the literary sky of 
England. I will not name him here, as I do not know whether he 
might not object to it. Why, even members of Parliament, who are, 
as a rule, rather given to court notoriety than otherwise, sometimes 
do not like to be named. The matter stood this wise : Gale's 
balloon was in pawn ; a Semite gentleman had lent money on it 
upon rather onerous conditions. The bailee, or pawnee, of the aerial 
article was a veritable Shylock, it would appear, who, by way of 
securing the receipt of his interest for the money lent, would 
often make arrangements profitable to his own pocket for balloon 
ascents, and would then send the unhappy pawner up under the 
most perilous circumstances for a " dirty brace of quids," as poor 
Gale used to call the paltry wage, in the bitterness of his heart. 

Now, it occurred to me, what a fine thing it would be to pay 
the Jew off, and then the three of us to travel all over Europe 
with the balloon, and in the balloon at all events, under the 
balloon. 

To secure the requisite sensation at starting, we were to fly 
first right across the Channel, from Dover to Calais. We were 
quite aware, of course, Pilatre de Eozier had attempted to cross 
from Calais to Dover, and had come to grief. But, in the first 
place, this had happened as long ago as 1785, in which very year, 
moreover, Blanchard and Jefferys had made a successful trip to 
Calais ; and had not Green's great Nassau done the trick since ? 
Besides, Eozier had attempted to cross in a Mongolfiere, and was 
not our aerial vessel a Charliere, after the fashion of Green's 
balloon ? 

The only trifling difficulty in the way was how to pay the 
Jew off; and this difficulty was fully provided against in our 
programme. 

We were to travel all over England, etc., in the usual way, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 83 

delivering in every city, town, and borough of the United Kingdom 
lectures on Aerostatics, illustrated by diagrams, and rendered 
attractive by the exhibition of toy-balloons with toy-cars attached 
to them cars with gray and white mice in them and miniature 
kittens to be sent right across lecture-halls from one end to the 
other, with a Chinese lantern underneath, to throw a light upon 
the subject. Why, the deuce must be in it, indeed, if we could 
not realise money sufficient to redeem our balloon, and start on 
our great expedition. 

" Gentlemen of the Jury," says the learned Serjeant Buzf uz, 
in the ever memorable case of Bardell [v. Pickwick " Gentle- 
men of the Jury, the late Mr. Bardell had been a single man, so 
to single men Mrs. Bardell appealed." Gale was a mariner; he 
had been a lieutenant in the Eoyal Navy. To mariners, then, he 
resolved to make his first appeal for generous support. " I know 
Hull," he said to me, " and I believe in Hull so we will go to 
Hull first." 

And to Hull we would have gone, the three of us, but that 
funds were rather low, and a translation was offered to me which 
promised to add a matter of eight or ten pounds to the common 
stock. You see, we were rearing a magnificent oak of the 
future ; but the acorn of the present was disappear! ngly small. 

So Daedalus went, attended by Icarus alone, and Mentor was 
left behind. To guard against hostile criticism, I beg to state 
here that I am perfectly aware Daadalus knew nothing of balloon- 
ing or of flying through the' air ; the wings which he is fabled 
to have made being simply the sails invented by him, which 
materially aided his escape from pursuing Minos ; and that there 
is really no warrant, classic or other, for attempting to connect 
Mentor with Icarus. 

Having by dint of hard, very hard, labour succeeded in com- 
pleting my task, I was on the point of starting to rejoin my 
partners at Hull, when I had a thunderbolt hurled at me in the 
shape of a letter from Icarus, which imparted to me the sad news 
that Daedalus and he were then actually detained at an hotel in 
Hull, for sundry moneys owing and due by them to divers 
Hullites. 

"Which had come to pass in this wise : 

Full of pluck and hope, and unrestrained by the wise man they 
had been compelled to leave behind in the metropolis, they had 
rushed madly into a speculation, without having first duly 
examined the ground. 

They had taken a spacious lecture-hall, and given orders for 
the gas to be lighted therein. They had expected a rush to the 
place on the great evening. Advertising had been neglected by 

o 2 



84 REMINISCENCES OF 

them, for the all-sufficient reason that they had no cash for it, 
and no credit could be got in Hull for this most indispensable 
article. 

An enterprising Orangeman (no political allusion intended) 
had contracted with the junior partner for the exclusive privilege 
of supplying the public with refreshment. Sixpence was the 
general price for admission; reserved seats, one shilling. The 
Orangeman had paid down seven shillings and sixpence for his 
most valuable privilege, which the two partners had joyfully spent 
in refreshments, to invigorate frame and mind for the performance 
of the arduous task before them. 

Well, the evening came. The aeronautic chief prepared his 
diagrams and toy balloons, gray and white mice and all, and 
rehearsed the little introductory speech I had written down for 
him before he left London. The junior took his seat in a little 
box at the entrance-door to the hall to receive the admission 
money. Alas ! Admission money ! There was no luck about 
that particular house ; there was no luck at all ! 

There was one boy, a small boy, who, evidently having no 
clearly defined notion of the value of money, actually came in 
with his sixpence a real sixpence; and one old sailor, who 
declared he was determined to give the lieutenant a lift, came in 
gratis, free, for nothing. 

But nobody else came except the Orangeman, who waxed very 
wroth, assailing the unhappy junior, shut up in his money- 
taker's (!) box, helpless and hopeless. The objurgations cf this 

party were fearful to hear. " D n and blast you, you swindlin' 

villain ! What do you mean by it ? Give me back my seven. 

and-sixpence. Hairy horse station ye call it, do you ? D n 

ye and yer hares and yer horses! You wants to give yersel' 
hairs, do you ? It is in the perlice-station ye ought to be. Give 
me back my seven-and-sixpence. Hand 'em over, afore I spiffli- 
cate ye." It was in vain that the unhappy young man in the box 
generously offered to cede the entire proceeds of the night's 
takings to the irate, disappointed refreshment speculator. He 
kept vociferating for his seven-and-sixpence, until the gas was 
turned off, and the chief, who was rather strong in the arm and 
short of temper, came resolutely to the rescue of his unlucky 
young friend. Well, there was the hire of the hall, the gas, and 
the hotel bill. All I could do was to take my partners out of 
pawn and bring them back to London. So the beginning of this 
gloriously promising venture was also the premature end of it. 

This was in 1849, if my memory does not mislead me. Some 
time after, poor Gale went to Bordeaux with his Shylock, where 
he fatally met his death in an ascent. There is reason to believe 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN'. 85 

that the unhappy man had nerved himself for this venture ifc 
was on a most unpropitious day by an extra tumbler of grog. 
He took his flight, however, in the orthodox fashion, and was 
coming down all right in a field near Bordeaux, where a number 
of peasants were congregated. These laid hold of the rope, most 
likely in a clumsy way, and Gale, rising in the car, excitedly 
vociferated to them in his own choicest vernacular. Poor fellow ! 
he was absolutely innocent of French. They must have mistaken 
his wild gesticulations, for they suddenly let go the rope, and the 
balloon went up again like a shot. Some days after they found 
his mangled remains, half-eaten by wild dogs, in a forest near 
Bordeaux. How he came by his death has never been ascer- 
tained. Perhaps he had inhaled some of the inflating gas, which 
had stupefied him, making him thus lose all control over the 
guidance of his air-ship. 

I had one other opportunity offered me to achieve aerial 
fame. It was close to the end of August, 1871. The subjoined 
extract from a letter of mine to the Aberdeen Free Press, a paper 
which I had the honour of specially representing abroad at 
the time, will show how the affair came off, or rather did not 
come off in so far as I was therein concerned : 

" Elberfeld, August 28th, 1871. 

" One of the great men of the age is in our midst at present, 
and a Briton to boot a man, it is true, of most flighty dis- 
position, yet of stable mind, and tenacious firmness of purpose, 
from which neither the cries of an excited, impatient multitude, 
nor the fierce blast of tempest-bearing winds, nor even the red 
lightning-darting hand of Jupiter Tonans can move him ; a man 
who looks down calm and impassive from vertiginous altitudes 
upon us miserable adacriptos glebce, and who, in the event of 
an eternal crash and smash cataclysm of our globe, might wing 
his way aloft to carry the tale to other spheres; in short, the 
Bismarck of the Empyrean COXWELL, the intrepid aeronaut. 

" I had not seen the king of the air since his famous ascension 
with Mr. Glaisher on the 5th September, 1862, when these 
bold explorers reached the stupendous height of some 30,000 
feet, exceeding by one clear third the highest altitude ever 
reached by Gay-Lussac, Barall and Bixio, John Welsh and others. 
Here he made his first ascension from the Johannisberg on Wed- 
nesday last, with his large balloon ' Express,' which measures 
about 40,000 cubic feet in extent. The * Express' has seen 
much hard service, and bears numerous honourable scars, gained 
in bold warfare with the elements, and with arboreal and other 



86 EEMINISCENCES OF 

obstacles to an 'easy descent.' It was Mr. Coxwell's avowed 
and loudly-proclaimed intention to 'go up' on Wednesday 
attended by six companions, including his own English assistant 
and the fat proprietor of the Johannisberg. Advances had been 
made to me to induce me to join in the aerial expedition, but 
knowing only too well that I am what the Germans call a 
Pechvogel, or 'unlucky bird/ I prudently declined to venture 
upon flying through the air. What security had I that my chance 
companions might not, in case of threatening accidents, have 
looked upon me as the Jonah of the expedition, and treated me 
like a bag of ballast ? The operation of filling did not seem to 
make very satisfactory progress on Wednesday afternoon, and it 
became clearly apparent, towards half-past five o'clock, that there 
remained yet a considerable void in the monstrous ball, which the 
hour still left the excursion had been announced for half-past six 
could not possibly suffice to fill up. The weather had been rainy 
and stormy all day, which might be supposed to interfere with the 
filling, and it was also intimated that the gas company had not 
put on sufficient pressure. Coxwell, who evidently did not like 
the look of things, resolved at the time upon a fresh inspection of 
his ship ; looking in from below, through the open valve, he dis- 
covered to his intense dismay that the ' Express ; had sprung a 
leak a neat little rent in the top sheet, through which the gas 
streamed out again almost as fast as it was coming in. Coxwell 
quickly determined upon his line of conduct. The public must not 
be disappointed, his intending companions might be ; so he craftily 
and cunningly took his stand in the car with perfect calmness, 
and told his people to slack the rope for a trial of the ascensional 
force of the balloon. Mr. Kiipper, the proprietor of the Johannis- 
berg, stood by on the ground with a huge basket of eatables and 
champagne, and lots of overcoats and shawls by his side ; and 
most of the other 'parties' were also gathered there, ready for 
the start. Coxwell, who stood in the car lightly clad, with a thin 
cap on his head, seemingly intent only on the trial flight to the 
rope's end, blandly intimated to those who held the rope to let it 
go once more; then suddenly, before anybody could guess his 
intention, threw out two sandbags, released the rope from the 
clump, and floated away into space. There was at first great 
disappintment felt by the public assembled in thousands to 
witness the sight of the departure of the car properly filled with 
its human cargo; but it became soon clearly apparent to the 
meanest capacity that it would have been impossible to take up a 
greater load than that of the skipper himself alone, for the balloon 
rose at first very slowly indeed, remaining soon stationary, with a 
seeming tendency to drop. The navigator promptly threw out the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 87 

single bag of sand he had taken with him as ballast, letting down 
at the same time the anchor, thus prudently providing for the 
chance of a premature descent. A few minutes after he was lost in 
a cloud. In about an hour's time he safely effected his descent 
near Beyenburg, at about three hours' distance from here. At 
eleven o'clock on the same night he returned to the Johannisberg, 
where he explained the cause of his abrupt departure, and showed 
that had he not gone off there and then, as he had done, there 
would have been an inevitable disappointment of the public. 
Rather a plucky thing to do, to go off in a balloon with a rent 
in it." 

It was in 1850. One of the most truly patriotic and most 
thoroughly British Ministers whom Britain ever could boast of, 
the glorious predecessor of our own glorious Gladstone, Sir 
Robert Peel, had just been snatched away by an envious fate, at 
the very time when the gross blunders of the incapable set that 
had been permitted to supplant him permitted so through the 
shallowest tricks of political huckstering had well-nigh com- 
pleted preparing his triumphant return to power. My dear young 
friend started a new half-crown monthly magazine, under the 
distinguished editorship of another much valued old friend of 
mine, the late (eheu !) Thomas Littleton Holt Sir Thomas L. H., 
Bart., some of his friends would have it. I know he never 
claimed the title, but I believe he was fully entitled to claim it. 
To the first number of this new magazine, to which the proprietor 
himself contributed one of the most charming little gems of a 
story, and which, in my opinion at least, was full of really good 
material, I contributed a brilliant diatribe upon the true proxi- 
mate cause of the great departed statesman's so bitterly lamented 
death, in which I am afraid I came down rather heavily upon 
poor Sir James Clark, who had some years before literally essayed 
to tread on my toes. The paper was signed "A Country Surgeon." 
I know not how it was, but this venture also came to a premature 
end. The first number was also the last number of the magazine, 
to which Thomas Littleton had given the name and style of " The 
Conservative Magazine." What would you have ? The Conser- 
vative party seemed at that time struck with fatal blindness to 
its own truest and best interests. It stupidly repudiated the 
brilliant new organ, which one of the older self-asserted weekly, 
and truly weakly, mouthpieces of effete Toryism ventured to 
brand as a " libel upon the party whose name it assumed." 

It was in the same year, 1850 ; I intimately knew a gentleman 
of the name of Townsend (or Townshend I really cannot exactly 
remember now) the son of a deceased captain in the British navy 



88 REMINISCENCES OF 

He was a most promising acquaintance, having discovered an 
infallible martingale, marvellously simple and easy withal a 
true Columbus's egg. After the salutary lesson which I had 
received in days of yore I was wonderfully distrustful of winning 
systems, infallible or otherwise ; but my friend Townsend demon- 
strated the infallibility of his martingale so many evenings 
running, playing for imaginary stakes of course, that even the 
most sceptical could hardly help being convinced. The system 
had this promising peculiarity about it, that you could only rely 
upon winning a moderate sum by it every day, as you played 
only for small stakes, and at once gave up playing upon the 
occurrence of the very first hitch. You might make ten or 
twelve pounds a day ; the only condition of continued success 
was, not to try beyond ; which means simply to avoid the perilous 
snare of success, a condition rather difficult of fulfilment to an 
ingrained gamester. 

My young friend I must continue to speak of him by this 
designation had at the time a small capital in his possession. 
He saw Townsend at work clearing no end of imaginary stakes. 
He thought there could be no harm in having a trial at real play. 
An arrangement was come to between Townsend and him, and I 
was invited to undertake the somewhat onerous duty, as I soon 
found out, of watching the active partner winning, and keeping 
him from falling a victim to the snare of success ; in other words, 
making him leave off play when winning. 

Well, we went to the very scene of my former disaster to 
Aix-la-Chapelle. 

For two days all went on and off most swimmingly. We 
realised our hotel bill and something like clear eight pounds a 
day besides, and I really began to think we had truly found a 
kind of philosopher's stone. 

On the third day nefastus dies, eheu ! Town send, who had 
been winning already more than twice the sum to which he was 
strictly limited by his own sacred promise, must take it into his 
confounded noddle to fancy himself in a vein of luck ; so he kept 
on playing and winning, despite all my mute appeals to him to 
stop and come away. Well, after having kept on winning for a 
time, and having bagged a hundred or a hundred and twenty 
pounds, his luck took the usual turn the other way, and in about 
twenty minutes he had to rise cleared out. Fortunately the 
stock entrusted to him was only ten pounds. Had he had a 
thousand or ten thousand pounds in his pocket at the time I am 
sure he would have lost every penny of it, as he was playing 
wildly and without the least system. He pleaded hard for 
another chance, but I resolutely set my back against it. Then he 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 89 

turned upon me fiercely, imputing his mischance to the disturb- 
ing influence of my demoniacal face glaring upon him from the 
opposite side of the table. It was this, and this alone, that had 
confused his mind and spoiled his play. We were sleeping in 
the same room. In the middle of the night the unhappy man 
manifested an ugly intention to cut my throat. He didn't 
though, being apprehensive, most likely, lest I should object to 
the proceeding. 

Next morning we sent him back to London, whilst we pro- 
ceeded to Paris. 

So this third venture also came to nought. The gloriously 
promising beginning was also the premature sad end 
of it. 

In autumn, 1875, 1 was living at Strasburg, one of the very 
few green spots in the sandy desert of my wandering life. Here 
I had made the acquaintance of a distinguished geologist, a 
Dr. H., who, finding that I possessed some trifling know- 
ledge of the science, kindly invited me to accompany him on a 
geological excursion to Sitten or Sion, in Switzerland, where he 
purposed to buy largely of a minister in a mountain village near 
Sion, who was saio. to possess one of the richest and rarest 
collections of Alpine specimens. He was amply provided with 
funds. I consented to go with him. We started from Strasburg 
towards the end of September. We had most delightful weather, 
more like the beginning of summer than of autumn. We passed 
rapidly through Basle, Berne, and Lausanne, and might easily 
have reached our business destination by the 28th of the month, 
had there not been, unhappily, a temptation, most alluring to my 
companion, placed right across our road, near the very goal to 
which we were bound. 

Saxon-les-Bains is the last station on the line to Sion. It is a 
small, rather primitive Swiss village in the valley of the Rhone. 
It lies at the foot of the Pierre-a-Voir, one of the finest cones in 
the Bernese Alps. It is surrounded by high mountains. The 
scenery is charming, and the air most pure and invigorating. 
The waters, which largely contribute to make it a health-resort, 
are strongly impregnated with iodine, and are considered most 
salutary in glandular and kindred affections. This my excellent 
travelling companion told me with much insistance, as he wished me 
to stay with him in Saxon for a few days. It was in vain that I told 
him I did not like iodine water, the less when I found it, like the 
Saxon fans salutis, rather largely impregnated with bromide of 
sodium. I told him I would as lief drink sea-water. I also 
pleaded that I had no glandular or kindred ailment about me ; 



90 REMINISCENCES OF 

but he insisted that the salubrious air of the place and the 
mountains around would do me great good. 

However, I soon discovered that it was not the fans salutis, 
nor the pure mountain air, but a very different attraction, which 
held him spell-bound to the place. The gaming tables, expelled 
from Baden-Baden, had found a temporary refuge in this most 
primitive, and, I have no doubt, before their advent and after 
their involuntary departure a few years after, highly moral Swiss 
village. Yes, there they were, hotel, casino, one trente-d-quarante 
and three roulette tables, croupiers and all, under the general 
management of a limited company. 

I remonstrated with my friend most warmly, telling him my 
own experience, and urging him earnestly to persevere in our 
original intention. I might as well have preached to the rocks 
that were frowning down upon us. In the end I had to give way,, 
and I had to stand by and see my friend, for whom I entertained 
the sincerest affection and the highest esteem in all respects 
except this one fatal foible, pass through the ever-changing 
chances and emotions of the gaming-table. 

Dr. H. was by no means an ingrained gamester, and, happily, 
he never completely lost control over himself. But he was deter- 
mined to "woo fortune," as he called it, and he generously pro- 
mised me the clear half of his winnings, besides defraying 
the cost of our journey and our stay in this Armida's garden. I 
told him I thought my watch-pocket would afford ample space to 
hold all his winnings, even though they were changed into copper 
tokens. He laughed, but he persisted. 

There were at that time three monster hells left in Europe 
Monaco, to wit, Baigneres, and this blessed Swiss village. 

The tables were kept in full swing from noon till eleven at 
night, the whole four of them almost incessantly (except during 
the dinner hours, from five till seven) surrounded by double and 
treble lines of people seemingly possessed by a frantic desire to 
be parted from their money. They belonged to all nationalities ; 
the female element strongly predominated, and among the ladies 
there were many old stagers, gamesters by profession. The 
French demi-monde was largely represented, so was also what 
may be delicately termed the "quarter-world," ladies who would 
not scruple to ask you to give or lend them a few coins to try 
their luck once more, after having played and lost their last 
available stakes, and who would not blush to waylay you even 
outside the Casino, where they evidently thought they had the 
better and freer chance to work upon your good nature. One 
day Dr. H. would insist upon forcing me to try my luck, even 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 91 

with a five-franc piece, which he handed me for the express 
purpose. I told him I was firmly resolved not to fall into the 
clutches of that particular Satan again. So, to his annoyance, I 
generously gave the five francs to one of these poor suppliants. 
I went to Sion, to see whether there were letters for us at the 
post-office there, for Dr. H. had delicately abstained from letting 
his young wife, then in an interesting condition, know that we 
had stopped at Saxon to gamble. On my return at night, I 
learned that my gift had borne rich fruit, the young lady having 
cleared 2,000 frs. at trente-d-quarante, which gave me sincere- 
pleasure ; but what gave me greater pleasure still, was that she 
had gone clean off with her winnings. Well, if my gift was the 
means of snatching that unhappy young brand from the gambling 
Tophet, I think I may lay claim to at least one meritorious deed 
in my life. 

Dr. H., however, did not look upon it in that light. He up- 
braided me rather severely for having " thrown away my luck," 
as he termed it. Gamesters are wonderfully superstitious, you 
see. I replied to his fierce animadversion upon the "glaring 
folly " of my conduct, simply that winning was the very thing I 
was afraid of. It was by that end, I told him, the devil generally 
laid hold of a man. 

It was a sad sight to me to see highly respectable matrons 
and innocent young brides on their wedding trip (as I did see 
them there) seated or standing cheek-by-jowl with cocottes. I 
used to watch with some interest a young Polish Countess I 
always had a sneaking liking for Poles very pretty, and remark- 
ably vivacious, gambling away her husband's money with the 
most daring equanimity of temper, playing high stakes, even to 
the maximum, at trente-d-quarante ; whilst her husband good, 
easy man was playing, not without success, a steady douzaine 
game at the roulette table. The maximum at Saxon, when I was 
there, was 3,000 frs. =120, at roulette, the minimum two francs; 
whilst at trente-d-quarante the highest stake which the bank 
would hold was 160, the lowest four shillings. Still, even at- 
these comparatively moderate rates, large sums of money would 
keep wandering, as a rule, from the pockets of the player into the 
insatiate maw of the bank, kept at the time, as I have already 
mentioned, by a limited company, to which, in my private opinion, 
a Bonazet or Blanc would have been vastly preferable. 

An individual, no matter what his character, position, or line 
of business, must always be somehow guided and restricted in 
his actions by certain considerations ; whereas a corporation, 
having proverbially no body to be kicked nor a soul to be saved, 
is quite free to perpetrate any moral, or rather immoral, villany. 



92 EEMINI8CENCES OF 

Thus, for instance, the old hell-keepers used to present their 
insane victims, when cleaned out, with a small percentage of the 
sums which the bank had swallowed, that they might at least be 
enabled to betake themselves decently to their homes. Fame 
used to relate how the prince of the fraternity, the late M. Blanc, 
whose daughters are princesses now, was wont to go so far in his 
.delicacy of feeling in this respect, that certain confidential 
servants of his had general instructions to search the woods 
^around the Casinoes over which their employer held sway for 
possible suicides, and eventually to put twenty pounds or so in 
the pockets of the dead, so that it might appear that despair over 
gambling losses had not been the determining motive of the 
rash deed. 

But our Casino corporation at Saxon-les-Bains which, thank 
Heaven, was kicked out some years ago from its Swiss asylum 
and last refuge would have thought it rank madness to indulge 
in anything like such delicate generosity to the living or the 
dead. When an unhappy punter or puntress, as the case might 
.be, had dropped his or her all into the voracious jaw of these 
vile cormorants, the Administration would present the unlucky 
individual, upon application in due form, with a l}on from the 
railway office, entitling the bearer to a third-class ticket value 
^bout eight shillings to Berne, Geneva, etc., and to the munificent 
sum of sixteen shillings in addition, receivable at the place of 
destination. Well, I was told that victims thus charitably sent 
home by the Administration had been known but too often to 
come back with fresh supplies, in the which case they were, after 
repayment of the twenty-four shillings granted, readmitted freely 
to the privileges of the Casino notably, of course, to the high 
privilege of dropping their money once more. In the event, 
however, of a victim being cleaned out again, the Administration 
would sternly refuse to repeat the munificent loan of twenty-four 
.shillings the so-called retraite. A case of this kind occurred at 
the very time when I was at Saxon. A young student of the 
Strasburg University, a North German, the only son of a widowed 
mother, had been in Saxon in the preceding month (August) for 
the benefit of his health. He had not been able to resist the 
.allurement of the tables, and he had, to his great misfortune, 
been so " fortunate " as to clear some four hundred pounds on 
the first day of his initiation into the mysteries of roulette and 
irente-ci-quarante. The demon of play had thus at once secured 
a firm hold on him. Before eight days were gone he had lost 
every farthing of his available cash, and deposited every article 
of value in his possession in the hands of the porter of the Hotel 
des Bains, a most accommodating fellow, who would lend you 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 93- 

cash upon every description of valuable property. I sus- 
pected this grinning hyena with his shark's teeth to be one 
of the directors of the Administration. In fact, everybody 
about the Hotel, as well as in the Casino, seemed to belong to- 
the Corporation. 

The ruined young gamester, cleared out to his last coin, had 
to leave his trunk in pledge for two days' hotel expenses, and 
apply for the retraite, to get back to Strasburg. 

Here, it would appear, he borrowed money to go home to his 
mother, who was dotingly fond of him. He had brought with 
him to Strasburg a small but select library, which his father had 
left him. He made the poor lady believe that a judicious outlay 
of a few hundred pounds upon new purchases to complete sets, 
would more than treble the actual saleable value of the collection, 
and that he would find it easy then to dispose of it at its enhanced 
value. So it was stated, at least, afterwards by the unhappy 
mother, who, trusting implicitly in her darling boy's assurances, 
sold out part of her small capital in the Prussian funds. 

The result was that when we were at Saxon, in the beginning 
of October, the lad made his appearance there once more, with 
some three hundred and fifty pounds in his pocket, besides his 
jewellery, etc., redeemed. 

I knew him slightly, poor fellow I used to meet him at 
dinner in the Cafe de 1'Espe'rance, on the Schiffleutstaden, in 
Strasburg. When I saw him insanely bent upon ruining himself 
at roulette and rouge-et-noir, I took the privilege of age to 
remonstrate with him upon the folly of his conduct. Dr. H, 
also, who had a large store of sound sense at the disposal of his 
friends so large, indeed, that he seemed to have kept an insuffi- 
ciency of it for his own private use did his best to give the 
greater force to my lecture. But it was all in vain. Every 

penny the young fellow had went to the d , beg pardon, the 

bank. Ashamed evidently to look us in the face, he applied once 
more for the retraite to take him back to Strasburg, but only to 
be sternly denied on principle ; yes, even so, on principle ! The 
Administration could not, and would not, encourage relapses. To 
what strange uses the word " principle " may be turned, to be 
sure. It is almost as useful a claptrap as the word " religion." 

Dr. H. gave the poor fellow the means to return to Strasburg. 
He vowed by every saint in Heaven that he would never no, 
never ! gamble again. I felt almost inclined to trust that the 
double lesson he had received had cured him of his folly. On 
our return to Strasburg, about eight days after, I heard casually 
that his library was for sale. In March following, when I was 
back in London, I read in a friend's letter to me from Strasburg, 



S4 REMINISCENCES OF 

that the wretched youth had blown his brains out. " There, but 
for the grace of God, goeth Thomas Morus," said one of England's 
wisest and best men, when he saw an unhappy culprit led to 
execution. The saying recurred to my mind as I dropped a tear 
over the memory of the suicide. 

To return to Saxon. We stayed there a few days longer. I 
have already stated that Dr. H. was not by any means an ingrained 
gamester. He could pull up in case of need, though he was 
obstinate, and had a notion that perseverance would make Fortune 
change her frowns to smiles. So when he had dropped some- 
thing like two hundred and fifty pounds over the experiment 
Gracious ! what a lot of stones might have been bought for the 
mone yi he turned rusty, and would have no more to say to 
Fortune. 

To my intensest relief he paid our hotel bill, and we left for 
Sion, just too late to do any good; for next morning, when we 
were on our way at last to the mountain village we were bound 
for, a fierce snowstorm drove us back, and we had to return to 
Strasburg re infectd. 

Dr. H. also had a system, an infallible system to win, based 
upon the most patient and careful study of the doctrine of 
chances. Some fifteen years at least, before this Saxon episode, 
I chanced to have a discussion with Thomas Littleton Holt, whose 
name has been mentioned before, and whom most of my readers 
will affectionately remember,' with his truly lordly presence, his 
splendid head, his magnificent flowing beard, his solid attain- 
ments, and his wonderful kindness of heart a true Prince of 
Bohemia, such as Henry Miirger would have delighted to shake 
by the hand and as Balzac would have loved to draw. 

In his exuberant humour Holt would often indulge in sly 
tricks at my expense. He would pretend to consult me upon 
some knotty question, placing posers before poor innocent me, 
which I would gravely set to work to solve in a satisfactory way ; 
when he would coolly tell me, his fat sides shaking with laughter, 
that I was altogether wrong, and prove it, too. 

On the occasion here in question, he asked me what were the 
chances at trente-d-quarante, if red had turned up seventeen times 
running, against the same colour turning up the eighteenth 
time; and supposing there happened to be an old ailing man of 
eighty and a new-born healthy infant in the same room, what 
were the chances that the latter would outlive the former, or 
vice versd ? 

I was setting out mentally upon most intricate calculations 
of chances, when he stopped me, telling me with a smile of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 95 

superiority, that the chances, however infinitely great or small 
they might appear to be on either side when embracing an exten- 
sive series of events, were exactly the same in any two individual 
cases pitted against one another. There was, he said, in the cases 
in point, just the same chance for red as for black, for the old 
man as for the infant. Of course, calculating the chances upon a 
thousand deals and upon a thousand cases of old men and new- 
born infants, the matter was vastly different. 

A very little reflection showed me that Holt was quite correct 
in this view of the case. I have often since thought that this 
curious equality of chances, which must be admitted to exist in 
every and any individual case where, for illustration, red is 
pitted against black as it were must necessarily materially affect 
the infallibility of the most infallible system of computing chances 
at the gaming-table. 

This was one of my dissuasive arguments with Dr. H. He 
would not see it, however, at the time when he was bent upon 
trying his system. He seemed to see it afterwards though, when 
weighted with the loss of 250 good money. 

Having travelled thus far out of the beaten track of chrono- 
logical order, I would have liked to have added here a few cha- 
racteristic touches, to give a slight sketch of Thomas Littleton 
Holt. But I fear this might be thought an unconscionable digres- 
sion ; I will therefore postpone this part of my reminiscences to a 
later period. 

Ho ! Westward Ho ! I took my first walk to Paris. The 
recollection of that first great walk through part of France stands 
pleasingly out from even the most pleasing reminiscences of my 
life. What a blessed land is France! and what a fine, lovable 
people the French are after all, despite their Grandomauia and 
other foibles ! 

It was an exciting time just then in France. The land was 
passing, in some parts semi-unconsciously yet, through the first 
throes of the great revolutionary heave that was so soon to cast 
out, for evermore, the impossible element of the elder branch of 
the Bourbons that monstrous anachronism in the politico-social 
fabric of the nineteenth century. The famous two hundred and 
twenty-one had been triumphantly returned again, and Polignac 
and his foolish master were cudgelling their poor brains to devise 
means to meet and repel the imminent onslaught of the opposi- 
tion in the newly-elected Chamber upon their cherished mediaeval 
system of government. 

I reached the French capital on the 24th of July, in the 
afternoon. I took a stroll through the Palais Koyal. Here, as 



96 EEMINISCENGES OF 

good luck would have it, I came upon Godefroi Cavaignac, whose 
acquaintance I had made by the merest chance the year before, 
when we were both on a flying visit to Strasburg. We had taken 
up our quarters at the same hotel, the Maison Eouge, where my 
friend Schneegans was kind enough to introduce me to the 
distinguished young Republican chieftain for so he was, em- 
phatically though my senior by no more than six years. I may y 
in fact, say of the crowd of professing Republicans and most of 
them sincere in their professions withal whom I came to know 
in France in the course of time, to my mind there were only two- 
that were cast in the true antique mould of freedom Godefroi 
Cavaignac and Armand Carrel ; both fated, alas ! to die long 
before their cherished aspirations had even transiently taken the 
semblance of form and substance Armand 'by the bullet of a 
clever, unscrupulous political hack and huckster ; Godefroi of 
hope deferred. 

I think this is the proper place to mention that I was once a 
member of the once famous Burschenschaft, an association of 
enthusiastic young students, who were sanguinely dreaming the 
sanguine dream of a united Germany, a free Germany, and some 
of them at least universal brotherhood, freedom, and happiness 
all over the world. My guardian, on the occasion of my last visit 
to him at Frankfort, asked me what business I, an alien in 
Germany, had to meddle with the inner affairs and institutions of 
that land. He sneeringly dubbed the Burschenschaft the great 
bib-and-tucker society for the radical reformation of all ills and 
abuses, and for the general regeneration of the human race ; and 
he told me, in his insulting way, that it was but idiotic conceit for 
young fools like them to trouble their small minds about weighty 
matters of State young fools who were displaying real aptitude 
only in N making ducks -and- drakes of their private fortunes, and 
who were most successfully intent upon misgoverning their own 
small affairs, and wrecking their best prospects in life. I remember 
how these sneers stung me to the quick at the time, and how I 
hotly retorted that I had some German blood at least in my veins, 
and that I had thrown in my lot with the great and glorious 
people of Fatherland, so grossly and vilely deceived by their 
rulers, to keep or replace whom on their tottering thrones they 
had expended their best blood; that the German Confedera- 
tion was rotten to the core, and ought to be destroyed root and 
branch ; and that it behoved the generous academic youths of the 
land to stand forth boldly as the redressers of the wrongs inflicted 
upon the people by the princes, and to upset the wretched rule of 
Pharisaical muckerdom and a petrified bureaucracy. I flattered 
myself at the time that I had the best of the argument, for rny 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 97 

good guardian grew as wroth and red as an irate tnrkey-cock. 
At this present time, more than half a century after, when I come 
to reflect seriously upon this episode of my life, I must confess I 
feel a little ashamed of my wondrous conceit in those days. My 
guardian ivas a Mucker and a Pharisee, and an unscrupulous self- 
seeking man, aud a drybone Bureaucrat; but I feel compelled to 
admit now that he was not altogether wrong in his slighting 
depreciation of the/'bib-and-tucker" movement. I cannot help 
smiling when I try to think seriously of the extraordinary hallu- 
cination which then held possession of my mind to bring the 
matter to a personal issue that I was a species of heaven-born 
statesman. Well, I was very young then, and knew no better 
which now I do. 

However, in 1829 and 1830 I was a most enthusiastic Burschen- 
schaftler, of that more select section of the Society which had 
the fraternal federation of all free peoples for its ultimate special 
object. 

It was, partly at least, as an emissary of this section that I 
visited Strasburg in 1829. So it was but natural that Godefroi 
Cavaignac and I should soon discover the close affinity of our 
ideas and aspirations. The fact was, at the time, the strongest 
hope of the advanced party of what I may call the Cosmopolitan 
Republicans of Germany rested mainly upon an upset in France. 

I was that very night (July 24th, 1830) introduced to two of the 
biggest men of the day Armand Carrel, whose name I have \ 
mentioned already a few pages back, and Louis Adolphe Thiers, 
then joint-editors of the National, which the two had started, in . 
conjunction with Santelet, the publisher, on January 1st, 1830, and 
which had in less than seven brief months shaken the artificial, 
plastered-up, rotten old fabric of the Bourbon regime to its very 
foundations. 

To the philosophical student of men and manners and events 
the very different after career and ending of these two men, then 
so energetically and harmoniously working together to overthrow 
the wretched rule of the elder Bourbon branch, is fraught with 
pregnant instruction. 

On a certain occasion Albert Smith said to Douglas Jerrold. 
"You see, Jerrold, we are rowing in the same boat." "Yes," 
replied Douglas, who could never leave a smart saying unsaid, 
even for the sake of the best and dearest friend" yes, my boy, 
but with very different sfculls."* 

* My friend Draper tells me that the witticism was originally applied 
by Douglas Jerrold to the late Gilbert a Becket in connection with 
Lamartine, and that it was Albert Smith who used to tell the anecdote. 



98 REMINISCENCES OF 

So it may be said of Thiers and Carrel, that though they also 
were certainly rowing in the same boat, and embarked in the 
same enterprise, it was with very different dispositions and 
widely divergent views. 

Armand Carrel was an austere Eepublican, a Eoman of the 
best period, a single-minded patriot. He had at an early age 
freely made the sacrifice of a brilliantly promising military career 
that he might not be forced to do violence to his convictions. 
He had valiantly fought in Spain under Mina, and had, indeed, 
only narrowly escaped death by the hands of his French captors 
in a desperate encounter. France was then under the apparently 
firmly re-established old regime, which had sent an army under th& 
Duke of Angoule"me to coerce the unhappy Spaniards who had 
risen against the wretched seventh Ferdinand of Holy-Yirgin- 
petticoat-embroidering fame. As is usual under similar condi- 
tions and circumstances, the powers that were looked upon a 
Frenchman fighting on the other side as a most damnable rebel 
who deserved to be shot. It is always thus with the powers that 
are. " L'etat c'est moi" said Louis XIV. " Love and serve your 
country, quand meme," ever say the powers that are in temporary 
possession in France, adding, however, invariably, " And we are 
your country, and if we catch you dissenting from our views upon 
that point we'll ram them down your throat with powder and 
lead if we have the chance." 

Armand Carrel escaped narrowly on that occasion. 

I am proud to say that I knew another noble Frenchman, of 
half-Scotch (Campbell) descent, young Bossel, a truly antique 
character, who was basely murdered by the " Versaillists," in 1871, 
because he had fought valiantly against them. Thiers, who 
through life preferred expediency and opportunism to principle, 
had voluntarily ceded his prerogative of mercy to a Commission 
ad hoc. Yet he might have saved Rossel, had he not been selfishly 
intent upon what he, foolishly enough, considered his personal 
interests. So he contented himself with a half -lachrymose appeal 
to the feelings of the bloody-minded Commission created by him- 
self. Of course, the appeal went for nothing. The brave General 
Cissey insisted upon the execution of the " deserter and rebel." 
Had the Commune but been victorious in the struggle, the brave 
General Cissey, and the equally brave Vinoy and Gallifet who 
mercilessly murdered the poor conquered Communards without 
even the extremely simple formalities of a drum-head court- 
martial would have been among the first to crave position and 
pay under the victorious Commune. And, forsooth, that chevalier 
sans peur et sans reproche, the great Bazaine, stood nobly forward 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 99 

on the occasion to advocate a policy of just and rigorous severity 
against traitors ! History is a sickening study, occasionally. 

Different men will often look with different eyes upon the 
notion of country and patriotism. 

In the Fall of 1871, a Paris publisher, M. Abel Pilou, brought 
out an illustrated work on the late (Ecumenical Council, with 
portraits of Pius IX., the eleven popes who have held councils, 
the sixty then living cardinals, the five hundred fathers of 
the council who attended, fac-similes of their signatures and 
autographs, etc. 

In looking over this most interesting work, I found, among 
other curious sentiments, one of the strangest ever placed on 
record, I believe. It was the autograph and signature of the 
late Bishop of Strasburg, the Very Reverend Father-in- God 
Andreas Raess. It is written in Latin, and bears date, Rome, 
16th May, 1870. The English version is as follows: " Wherever 
thy fatherland be, it is a valley of tears. It is ridiculous to cling 
to it with obstinate fond affection. One's country matters nought 
for good nor for evil (Nullum patria bonum, nullumfacit malum)." 
Yet this man called himself the " patriotic Bishop of Strasburg," 
in his Jesuitical machinations and intrigues against the German 
Empire. But these were dictated, of course, by his intense 
Romanism. 

To return to Armand Carrel. I had reason to believe, nay, I 
may go further and say that I had reason to know at the time, 
that splendid offers of office were made by the Lafayette- 
Lafittists to the brilliant young journalist he was then only 
thirty which he disdainfully declined, preferring to protest with 
all the energy of his nature and all the fire of his convictions 
against the trick practised upon France. He opposed the Govern- 
ment of the King of the Barricades the Roi Epicier, as he 
dubbed him ab initio and Louis Philippe knew that he could 
not possibly have a more formidable enemy than this magnificent 
incarnation of the very principle of integrity, combined with 
transcendent talent, and it was from no fault of his that the 
noble Carrel was not placed before a court-martial after June 5th y. 
1832. 

Carrel was decidedly against the April rising in Lyons, in 
which the Republicans and the silkworkers fought side by side 
and wondrously hard, too for five days, and wore only with 
difficulty overcome even then. I was in Algiers at the time, 
but I knew all the details afterwards from Godefroi Cavaignac. 
Although this rising had been resolved upon against Carrel's 
wiser counsel, yet he boldly and uncompromisingly took up the 

H 2 



100 REMINISCENCES OF 

cudgels for the vanquished party. He mercilessly assailed in his 
glorious paper (which I had sent to me regularly in my Algerian 
quarters) the old senators, the marshals, and high legal officials 
of the empire who now sat in the Chamber of Peers in judgment 
upon so much better and more honest men. The responsible 
editor of the paper was condemned for these fearless attacks to 
two years' imprisonment, and four hundred pounds fine. Carrel 
combated desperately against the application of the famous 
infamous September laws. From this time forward he treated 
the Government with contemptuous disdain. 

After my return from Algiers, when, in spring, 1836, I came 
for a short time to Paris, he was kind enough to give me employ- 
ment on his paper, to translate from the German and English 
journals into French. I was in Lyons when Emile de Girardin's 
systematic scurrilous attacks upon the noblest Frenchman of the 
day attacks but too obviously inspired by the Tuileries led 
finally to the fatal duel of the 22nd of July, 1836. Two days 
after France lost her then greatest son. I remember well the 
burning indignation with which I and thousands upon thousands 
in Lyons learnt the particulars of this political duel-murder. 

Yery different was the career of Adolphe Thiers, that thorough 
incarnation of expediency. But this is matter of history, with 
which I have no call to meddle, the less so as since my first 
meeting with the great little man, on the 24th of July, 1830, I 
saw him only casually, and generally from a distance. After all, 
he was a wise statesman, and a patriot in his way, albeit 
self-seeking. 

An amusing little anecdote of the earlier times of his political 
career may not be deemed altogether out of place here. 

Who that has ever pursued the noble avocation of a writer for 
the press has not had occasion, now and then, to call warm 
blessings upon the heads of compositors or readers, for some 
accidental or malicious muddling of his productions, some 
untoward substitution of wrong words or letters, some awkward 
transposition of lines ? The great Horning Advertiser did suffer 
much in this way in the palmy days of the author of " Eandom 
Eecollections." Nay, even the leading organ of the world has had 
to bemoan, on one occasion at least, a compositor's unlucky con- 
founding of two words. Such little mistakes of the press are 
often calculated to afford the reading public vast delight, what- 
ever the feelings of the writer of the muddled article, or of the 
editor of the paper may be. 

Well, it was in the days of Louis Philippe, on the occasion of 
one of the rather over-frequent Ministerial crises which marked 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 101 

the " Constitutional " career of that great political meddling and 
muddling see-saw practitioner, who, in spite of Thiers' axiom, 
" Le roi regne : il ne gouverne pas," would insist upon trying to 
govern, most likely because he knew not how to reign. Thiers 
had had to be sent for. One morning there appeared in the 
Constitutionnel the following startling paragraph : " His Majesty 
the King received M. Thiers yesterday at the Tuileries, and 
charged him with the formation of a new Cabinet. The dis- 
tinguished statesman hastened to reply to the King : ' I have only 
one regret, which is that I cannot wring your neck like a 
turkey's.' " A few lines lower down there was another paragraph 
running to the following effect : " The efforts of justice have been 
promptly crowned with success. The murderer of the Rue du 
Pot-de-fer has been arrested in a house of ill-fame. Led at once 
before the Judge of Instruction, the wretch had the hardihood to 
address that magistrate in terms of coarse insult, winding up 
with the following words, which amply show that there remains 
not a spark of conscience or right feeling in this hardened soul : 
-* God and man are my witnesses that I have never had any 
other ambition than to serve your august person and my country 
loyally to the best of my ability.' " 

The printer had just cleverly managed to interchange the two 
addresses. The cream of the joke was that it was universally 
known how very little love there was lost between the King and 
the Minister. 

To return to the night of the 24th of July. That night and 
the day after I saw many other men then rising to fame. 

In times of great political excitement acquaintances, and even 
friendships, are readily made, and Cavaignac's introduction was 
a general passport to me. 

It would be ridiculously presumptuous in me were I to volun- 
teer the least supplemental contribution to the history of the 
July revolution, which has been written over and over again by 
infinitely more competent hands. 

However, I think I may crave permission to state the im- 
pression made upon my mind by what I saw and heard around 
me during the two days preceding the critical twenty-sixth. 

A numerous and, at the time, highly important and influential 
section of the Opposition men like Odilon-Barrot, then Presi- 
dent of the famous Society, " Aide-toi et le Ciel t'aidera," Monta- 
livet, Secretary of the same Society, Guizot, Duchatel,and others 
barely contemplated even the possible overthrow of the elder 
branch, and certainly had no notion of the substitution of a 
republic for the established monarchical form of government. All 



102 REMINISCENCES OF 

they wanted, apparently, was to infuse a modicum of constitu- 
tional freedom into the charter and the interpretation thereof, 
which they sanguinely hoped to attain by moral force alone 
through the new Chamber. Odilon-Barrot, more notably, strove 
desperately to save the Bourbons. I have reason to believe that 
as late as the evening of the twenty-fifth he insisted with his 
friends that resistance to the Government should be restricted 
within the narrowest limits of absolute legality. Godefroi 
Cavaignac and his more intimate friends' hopes and aspira- 
tions went very far beyond this neutral-tinted programme. 
Blanqui, whom I came to know afterwards, consistently re- 
jected and combated to the death all and every system but the 
^Bxtremest socialistic republic, as his life-long political martyrdom 
has abundantly demonstrated. 

x Carrel was, like Cavaignac, a Kepublican pur et simple, so 
were Armand Marrast (then on the staff of the Courier Francais), 
Cormenin, the two Gamier-Pages, Dupont de 1'Eure, Audry de 
Puyraveau (within certain bourgeoisistic limits), and some others. 
Armand Barbes was an extreme Republican ; but I think he came 
to Paris after the July days ; besides that he was very young at 
the time, being, if I mistake not, some two or three years my 
junior. Ledru-Rollin also was still very young, and I do not 
remember hearing him spoken of before 1832, when he wrote his 
famous opinion against the state of siege declared in Paris. 

Then there were the Elders of the movement, the men who 
had seen revolutions before in their time Lafayette, Lafitte, and 
others ; and the important section of the Politicians the Casimir 
Periers, the Dufaures, the Delesserts, the Martins, the Testes, 
the Gasparins to which section the good Adolphe Thiers was 
only too ready to rally. 

The Bonapartists were prudently resolved to bide their time. 
Moreover, many of the old marshals and generals of the Empire 
cared but little under which regime they might have to serve, so 
long as their position, pay, and pensions remained intact and 
safe. 

Altogether, to sum up briefly, up to the morning of the 
twenty-sixth, when the Moniteur gave the result of the King and 
his Ministers' deliberations and hesitations, there were but few 
who thought as yet of carrying the decision of the long-pending 
contention between Crown and people into the streets. On the 
contrary, it was almost universally taken for granted that the 
battle of the Constitution was to be fought in the newly-elected 
Chamber. 

But so soon as the rash ordonnances made their appearance in 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 103 

the official journal, matters assumed a truly threatening aspect 
a whiff of 1789 passed suddenly over Paris. 

" Le roi fait les reglements et ordonnances pour Texecution 
des lois et la suret6 de 1'etat." In this vague article of the^ 
Charter, Charles, Polignac, and Marmont had apparently found 
sufficient warrant for them to arbitrarily annul the late election^, 
put down the press, and order a new mode of election, deemed by 
them calculated to supply the Crown with another chambre 
introuvdble. 

With the ordonnances for their groundwork, Carrel and Thiers , 
found it no difficult task to get forty-two more of the leading 
journalists to sign their own dignified, though pretty vehement, 
protest against this equally vile and rash attempt to ride rough- 
shod over the dearly-bought liberties of France. 

What came after is matter of history how the Eoyal Guards, 
who were the worthy successors of the old Eoyals of the time of 
the first great revolution, began the fray by firing upon the 
people at the Palais Eoyal ; how barricades sprung up as by 
magic ; how the braggart Polignac and his boastful crew of 
nonentities ran away frightened when they found that the troops 
of the line refused to act against the insurrection ; how these 
brave patriotic soldiers at last left Mannont, with his Swiss mer- 
cenaries and his Garde Eoyale, to fight the battle by themselves, 
if so they listed ; also, eheu ! how, when the victory was won, the 
old meneurs and the politicians stepped in to filch the fruits of 
that victory from the people, who had so hotly contested for it, 
and to palm upon unhappy France another, perhaps even worse, 
edition of royal misrule. 

No doubt Lafitte, Lafayette and Odilon-Barrot (who, when he 
found that nothing could save the elder branch, rallied to the 
younger), Casimir Perier, and others, were honest and well- 
meaning in their acts and intentions. It required the bitter 
lessons of dire experience to teach some of them, at least, the 
futility of the best-intentioned attempts to make constitutional 
silk purses out of royal pigs' ears. 

What I did in the trois journees glorieuses ? Well, I joined 
in the fray, although I must admit that, strictly speaking, I had 
no call or business whatever to do so. As an alien I had no right 
or claim to meddle even to the least extent of my very small 
capacity. You see, I felt, somehow or other, that I was a repre- 
sentative youth was I not a cosmopolitan Eepublican ? I also 
could not help remembering instinctively that I had a quart or so 
of French blood in iny veins. So I went to the barricades with 
the rest of them. 

My recollections of these exciting days are more like a fleeting 



104 REMINISCENCES OF 

phantasmagoria than aught in the shape of seizable and palpable 
reminiscences. They are floating this very instant before my 
memory like the dim outline of a dream or vision, of which I in 
vain strive to fix the details. I have a hazy recollection of com- 
bating to the best of my ability, but being speedily called upon 
to serve the cause in the nobler capacity of attending the wounded, 
which I trust I did assiduously and diligently. I remember that I 
was associated in these ministrations with an earnest young man, 
a student of medicine, whom his friends called Nelaton. Both 
the fact and the name had for long years slipped my memory, 
when the famous case of the detection of the bullet in Garibaldi's 
foot by the great French surgeon Nelaton brought it all back to 
my mind. I know not to this present day, and I shall never 
know now, whether the young man who worked so earnestly by 
my side, on the 27th of July, 1830, was identical with the prince 
of science, who had achieved a world-wide fame when death 
carried him off too early for suffering humanity. In 1865 my 
friend Yapp, the Daily Telegraph's Paris correspondent, kindly 
promised to introduce me to Nelaton, whom he invited to meet 
me at his apartments in the Place Wagram. Unfortunately, 
an urgent case kept Nelaton away on the occasion, and I had to 
leave for London almost immediately after. 

Lafitte and Lafayette's most unconstitutional action, and the 
establishment of the bourgeois throne to which it led, hugely dis- 
pleased all sincere Kepublicans, and, for the matter of that, all 
true friends of France with their senses about them. I had 
reason to know that Godefroi Cavaignac and Armand Carrel 
would rather have kept Charles X., as the less glaringly patent 
evil of the two. They would gladly have waited a few years 
longer. 

Yet I have reason to believe that in August, immediately after 
the accession of the Citizen-King, " some one " disinterred from 
the tomb of the Cent Jours "certain addresses to the French 
people " by one Louis Philippe, Duke of Orleans, in which that 
noble prince of the blood royal of France most solemnly and 
vehemently vowed unswerving lealty to the illustrious branch of 
the elder Bourbons, then more immediately embodied in the 
slightly unwieldy augustivm corpus of the Eighteenth Louis, and 
swore by all he held sacred that no inducement could or should 
ever induce him to take his seat on the throne of France, unless 
the most dire fate should befall him to live to see the extinction 
of that illustrious branch, of which he proclaimed himself the 
most faithful subject. It was audacious infamy to ascribe to his 
loyal heart guilty wishes and perfidious aspirations. Well, " some 
one " suggested to Carrel and Cavaignac the opportuneness of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 105 

having this address reprinted and distributed all over Baris and 
France with a rider to it declaring that the new King's present} 
profession, " La Charte sera desormais une ve"rite," would turn 
out just as hollow and deceptive as this exuberant and extra- 
vagant protestation of loyalty to the Bourbons, placarded all 
over Paris in June, 1815, after "Waterloo. The two noble chiefs 
of the Eepublican party* declined. " C'est une arme sale dont 
nous ne saurions nous servir pour notre sainte cause," said Carrel. 
" C'est une arme eraoussee," added Cavaignac, " qui nous ferait 
defaut. Cela pourrait trouver une place tout au plus dans une 
nouvelle edition du { Dictionnaire des Girouettes.' " *% 

Cormenin protested impetuously against the trick played upon 
the country. He emphatically declared that the elevation of the 
Duke of Orleans to the throne of France was a flagrant infringe- 
ment of the sovereignty of the people. He never rallied to the 
Government of July, and became a sharp thorn in the side of 
Louis Philippe, whose many acts of paltry meanness and dis- 
honest grasping he exposed in his famous " Lettres sur la Liste 
Civile," of which the first made its appearance as early as 1831, 
on the occasion of the debate on the Budget. Cormenin rallied, 
however, at a later period to the Bonapartist coup d'etat a 
tergiversation which I, for one, could never have believed possible 
of him. 

General Lamarque also, one of the brightest glories of the 
French army, and many other men of note, disapproved strongly 
of Lafitte and Lafayette's action. But, unhappily, it was too late. 
Matters had gone too far for any possible successful opposition 
to the accomplished fact which saddled France for eighteen years 
with a corrupt Government of political hucksters and tricksters. 

So the Republicans decided to submit for a time to the force 
of circumstances. They set at once to work, however, to organise 
for future action. Ib was Godefroi Cavaignac who took the lead 
in this. It was by his impulse and under his direction that 
democratic clubs and societies were formed all over Paris and in 
many parts of France. He and many other sincere Republicans 
found their way into the National Guard (Cavaignac as captain of 
artillery), where they strove might and main to leaven these 
citizen soldiers with their own Eepublican ideas and aspirations. 
But Lafayette and the bourgeois element proved too strong for 
Cavaignac and his friends and followers in the National Guard, 
BO the risings attempted in the fall of 1830 came to nought, 
Cavaignac was put upon his trial for sedition, but he was 
triumphantly acquitted by the jury. 

I venture to throw these few historic notes on paper here, as 
all these things passed within my own personal ken and observa- 



106 REMINISCENCES OF 

tion, and may thus be permitted to figure among the reminiscences 
of my life. 

I remained in Paris up to spring, 1831, engaged in desultory 
studies of my profession, and in equally desultory conspiracies. 
It would have been better for me, of course, to think seriously of 
my examination ; but, as usual with me, I thought any time 
would do for that. I knew that I wanted still a deal of hard study 
and practical preparation before I could venture to face a State 
examination in Prussia. But I found it so much more pleasant 
to take several delightful walks through France instead, stopping 
now a few months at Strasburg, then a few months at Lyons or 
at Montpellier, for a little hospital practice : with a hurried run to 
Berlin, just when a cholera visitation was frightening that gay 
city out of all propriety ; but upon the whole leading an idle life, 
and throwing my days away as had I thousands upon thousands 
of them to spare. 

In the French hospitals, wherever my peregrinations led me, 
I found Broussais in the ascendant; and what I saw made me 
less and less in love with my chosen profession, and less and 
less eager to take the requisite steps to start in practice for 
myself. 

Besides, with all my extravagance, I thought that I could not 
possibly spend so much but that there should be left standing 
still a good round sum on the credit side of my account. And 
really, comparatively speaking, I had lived almost economically 
on my journeyings through France ; so it did not matter much, 
after all, if I enjoyed life a little longer in the dolce far niente 
style to which I had almost exclusively taken of late. 

Having come of age now, I went back to Berlin in the 
beginning of spring, 1832, to have a settlement with my guardian, 
whom I found alone, madame and family being away on a trip to 
the country. I was prepared for much, but I must freely confess 
that I felt staggered and faint when the austere, pious, honourable 
man to whom my poor dead father had so blindly entrusted the 
care of my person and fortune, coolly explained to me the actual 
state of my affairs. With a demoniacal grin on his saturnine 
face, he laid before me voucher after voucher to show how I had, 
almost from the commencement of my academic career, eked out 
the interest, insufficient to supply the insatiate demands of my 
blind extravagance, by encroaching upon the capital, which of 
course had again led to a reduction of the interest, and so forth in 
the vicious circle. I had receipts laid before me, signed by me, 
for much larger sums than I remembered having received. 
Heaven help me and my folly! In those days I hardly ever 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 107 

cared to look at aught save the bright coins, and I would blindly 
put my name to almost anything laid before me. 

I say in those days I may go farther : the same foolish 
carelessness has run, like a damnable black thread, through nearly 
overy business transaction of my life, and I have had to pay 
heavy penalties for it over and over and over again. I may 
conscientiously aver I never suspected anyone of trickery. Many 
a time have I consented to do translations at half and third prices, 
upon a bare promise of second and third editions, which after- 
wards never came to be published under my supervision except 
when they happened to be so thoroughly rewritten in the original 
that they might fairly pass for new works, the translation of 
which would involve too much labour for dispensing with my 
assistance. I once did a couple of grammars for an eminent 
publisher, at twenty pounds apiece upon the distinct under- 
standing that I was to he paid five pounds in addition on every 
new edition. I had neglected to have a written agreement, so 
I never saw a penny of the promised cash, although I saw several 
new editions. Yet the lesson profited me not. Years after I 
translated a book for another great publisher at a low rate of 
remuneration. In this instance the publisher insisted upon a 
written agreement. All I had to do was to put a half-crown 
stamp on it. But why should I do so ? Why, indeed P Well, I 
had to recover my paltry pay by an action at law, and it was 
only to the indulgence of the Inland Eevenue Department that I 
was indebted for the successful issue of that action. 

And how often have I had to work literally pour le roi de 
Prusse, because I would blindly neglect the most common 
precautions to ensure me the reward of my labour ! Yet, on the 
other hand, I must say that these sad instances were exceptions ; 
as a rule, I have had to deal with honourable men and women 
whose word was their bond. And truly I know not whether, 
with all my experience on the darker side, I should even now 
much care to act differently were I permitted to live my life over 
again. Better, far better, even foolish universal trust than worse 
than foolish universal distrust of one's fellow-men. 

As for the folly of signing papers of any kind without first 
reading them over, it seems almost too self-evident to need 
elucidation or illustration. Yet I had occasion in after-life to see 
an almost incredible instance of it. I had a friend of the name 
of Goetze, the son of the beautiful Madame Zanoli, of the Farina 
firm of Cologne, by a former husband. Goetzo was in the prime 
of life when I first knew him, one of the most handsome and 
accomplished men I ever met in the course of my career. He was 



108 REMINISCENCES OF 

under a cloud, it was said, at the time when he came over from 
Cologne to London, where, however, his talents and acquirements 
speedily procured him an excellent position as foreign corre- 
sponding clerk to one of the largest corn firms. He was a very 
good linguist. 

Gcetze thoroughly understood the corn trade, and he had a 
deeply-rooted notion that, had he but the capital to start in it, he 
would speedily realise a large fortune. 

Unhappily the head of the house in which he was employed 
soon came to repose the most absolute confidence in him. He 
was authorized to open all letters, and his chief signed blindly all 
and every paper placed before him by this most trusted clerk. 
This led Gcetze to form a plan of establishing a large corn busi- 
ness of his own upon a self-created capital. Not daring to trade 
in his own name, he entered into an occult partnership with a 
Dutchman, who applied to a number of firms in the Baltic and at 
Odessa for cargoes of corn, referring them for his respectability 
and solvency to Gcetze's principal. Of course the replies were 
satisfactory. Goetze expected a rise of some four to six shillings 
a quarter. Large orders were given. Of course this could not 
all be done upon references and credit. Considerable payments 
had also to be provided for. Gcetze's principal blindly accepted 
bills to the tune of some ten thousand pounds. It came to 
pass afterwards that corn did rise in the market ; and all would 
have been well, and perhaps no one ever the wiser for it, had not 
the Dutchman been an arrant rogue, aud had not Gcetze been 
compelled to accompany a member of the firm on a voyage to 
Hamburg, just at the critical time when the first cargo came in. 

Master Dutchman seized the opportunity to sell this cargo, 
and to mizzle with the proceeds. He kindly informed his unlucky 
confederate, per telegram, that the game was up, and advised him 
to take care of himself. The telegram, by misadventure, fell into 
the hands of Gcetze's chief, and the poor devil only owed his 
chance of escape to America to temporary hesitation on the part 
of the latter. I have never seen or heard of Goetze since ; I only 
heard it rumoured some ten years ago that he was established at 
Baltimore. His daring speculation brought ruin upon the unlucky 
firm in which he had been employed in London. 

To return to the settlement with my guardian. 

The sad upshot of it all was that I found, and was forced to 
admit, that more than five-sixths of the ample fortune left me by 
my maternal grandfather was clean gone squandered in senseless 
extravagance in less than six short years. And now it dimly 
dawned upon me for the first time what a handsome substantial 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 109 

fortune it had been, and how happy I might have been in life. It 
was truly a mauvais quart cTheure for me when I realised my 
position in all its naked reality. But I was never overmuch 
given to crying over spilt milk ; besides that I felt perhaps 
instinctively that, if there was cause for crying, it was rather 
over my ill-spent youth than over my squandered fortune. 

With the innate folly of my disposition, I sought and found 
consolation in the truly stupid reflection that, after all, things 
might have been even worse, and that there still remained to me 
some twelve thousand thalers, and my library, upon which I 
had spent much good money chiefly in providing worse than 
useless rich binding for the rare old tomes left by my maternal 
grand-uncle. 

My guardian was kind enough may be to appease his con- 
science to advise me to sell my books and to invest all that 
remained to me in the French funds, where he hinted somewhat 
eneeringly, as was his wont, it might be safer than within 
easy reach of the Prussian authorities, who might perchance feel 
disposed to punish my foolish seditious agitation by the beauti- 
fully simple process of confiscating everything belonging to me 
within their province. 

Had anyone else advised me to the same effect, I might 
perchance have acted upon the advice. But it was my guardian, 
whom I now thoroughly hated and despised, that counselled me 
to this course of proceeding, and this was of itself sufficient to 
make me contemptuously disdain what was most likely meant for 
my benefit. May be also that, with all my political predilections 
and prejudices, I had a firmer faith in a Prussian than in a 
French investment. I had no notion yet of the truly marvellous 
extent and elasticity of the resources of France, which, indeed, 
would seem to defy the maddest extravagance of even the 
most densely and hopelessly incapable government to absolutely 
ruin. So I left my cherished library still in the care of my 
friend Dr.Tuchen, who had kept it for me since my first departure 
from Berlin ; and I appointed an agent to watch over my invest- 
ments in the funds, and to remit to me abroad the interest and 
such portions of the capital as I might require in addition. 

My last interview with my guardian was stormy in the 
extreme. I am afraid I was not very polite to the gentleman, 
and he was kind enough to send me to well, to Hanover in 
return. He was such a loudly professing Christian, and he 
must have felt how -much he had injured me morally much 
more seriously even than materially. 

I think I had an impression that, if I had to travel that 
way, I might as well smooth the path in the old-established 



110 REMINISCENCES OF 

fashion, and I supplied accordingly material for a few miles of 
paving. In sober earnest, I formed a great many most excellent 
resolutions which, had I but acted up to them, would even then 
still have given a different turn to my after-career but I simply 
did not. I went back to Strasburg instead, and renewed pretty 
much my former course of life only that I strove to be a little 
less profuse in my expenditure. 

About the middle of May, 1832, 1 received a letter from my 
friend Wirth, one of the intensest Germans I have ever met with 
in life. He invited me to a great gathering of patriots to be 
held towards the end of the month at Hambach, near Neustadt- 
on-the-Hardt, in the Bavarian Palatinate. Of course I went. 

It was a grand affair altogether. The patriotic assemblage 
numbered above thirty thousand, among whom there figured 
older and younger students from every German university. 
Strasburg too had sent representatives ; there were also numbers 
of Frenchmen present, some of them my own intimate friends, 
and a powerful contingent of Poles. The black-red-gold banner 
of Germany was raised, and enthusiastic speeches delivered. My 
friend Wirth spoke, so did Siebenpfeiffer and others. I also 
ay, even I felt moved by the spirit to deliver an oration. Next 
day another meeting was held at Neustadt, where a number of 
resolutions were carried that ought to have made every individual 
member of the condemned German Confederation shake in his 
Imperial, Eoyal, Grand Ducal, or Princely shoes and stockings 
only they did not. On the contrary, the Confederation replied 
by the wretched coercive resolution of the 28th of June, and 
ordered the prosecution of the principal speakers at the Hambach 
festival meeting. 

I was back in Strasburg in the first days of June. I intended 
to go on to Paris, to walk the hospitals there, and work hard 
to prepare for my examination. Alas! this was also doomed 
to turn out nought but another magnificent paving-stone for 
the road ad infer os, in this one particular instance not al- 
together by my own free choice and seeking. On the 5th of 
June, the funeral of the great and good General Lamarque, 
the ever-consistent opponent of elder and younger branch alike, 
had led to an attempted insurrection in Paris, speedily sup- 
pressed and stifled in much good Republican blood ; and I was 
warned by my friends to give Paris a wide berth for the present. 

I might, of course, have very well managed to study in Stras- 
burg, which at the time happened to be the, to me, nearest 
medical faculty in France. But, somehow or other, I thought 
Montpellier the better school of the two. You see it was a 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. Ill 

delightful June, and the weather was really too warm for hard 
study, and it would take me six weeks at least to lounge up to 
the southern university, which was so much idle time to the good. 
So, of course, I made tracks for the south. 

I naturally took Lyons on my way. Lyons! What sweet 
memories of the past the name brings back to my mind ! It was 
there that I afterwards lived many of my happiest days. 

This was the first time I came to that blessed oasis in the 
sandy desert of my life. 

In the fall of 1831 there had been a most formidable insur- 
rection of the canuts, or silk-weavers, of the Croix Rousse, which 
had raged from the day of its outbreak, November 21, to the day 
of its final suppression, December 3. It had held its own for close 
upon nine days against all the forces at the disposal of the 
Government and the municipality ; and it had taken the great Mar- 
shal Soult himself and the eldest son of Louis Philippe, backed 
by twenty thousand men of the army, to put it down at last. 

Yet, six brief months after, all the traces of this truly fearful 
struggle had vanished ! In France, the land and the people have 
the recuperative faculty developed to the highest degree. What 
would prove irretrievable ruin to any other land and people, passes 
over France and the French as a mere distempered dream, leav- 
ing at the most, on awaking, faint traces of remembrance behind. 

It is thus that France, after two centuries of twice restored 
Bourbon rule since the death of Henry IV. eighteen years of 
Orleans' corruption, a blood-spilling Empire, and a debased lower 
Empire ; the sad excesses of one Republic, and the equally sad 
blunders of another many ruinous wars, and several most 
fearful and destructive Communist risings still remains at this 
present time, under the Third Eepublic, the most blessed land on 
God's fair earth. 

I had been in Lyons about six weeks, and was just beginning 
to contemplate the desirableness of moving on to Montpellier, 
when the firmness of my resolution to complete my studies with- 
out further unnecessary delay was suddenly and over-severely 
tested by an alluring proposal made to me by a wealthy 
Marseillais, whose acquaintance I had accidentally made at 
the Hotel de 1'Europe. 

He was a M. Legros. He intended to embark his large capital 
in some manufactory or other, and he wished to inspect the indus- 
trial establishments of Great Britain. Like most Frenchmen, 
he was absolutely innocent of any language but his native tongue 
and the Provengal dialect. So he invited me to accompany 
him, upon the understanding that he was to pay one half of my 



112 REMINISCENCES OF 

expenses ; in other words, he engaged to pay three-fourths of 
our joint spendings on our voyage. This seemed fair enough. 
Only had I reflected that everything in this world is relative and 
comparative, I should certainly have inquired first a little into 
his habits, ere I had consented to this agreement. I should have 
reflected also that I had no business whatever to inspect indus- 
trial establishments in England, but was, on the contrary, 
imperiously called upon to complete my studies and start on my 
career in life. However, I strove to persuade myself that this 
voyage would prove most instructive to me ; and what was to 
prevent me from frequenting the hospitals in Great Britain, thus 
turning my visit to that land to the very best and most profitable 
account ? But no matter how I took the affair, I accepted and 
went. It was my first visit to England since the days of my 
earliest childhood, when I was there with my parents. 

We visited London, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Not- 
tingham, Leeds, Sheffield, Bradford, Leicester, Wolverhampton, 
Portsmouth, Bristol, Newcastle, and a great many more places in 
England; and Edinburgh, Paisley, Dundee, and Glasgow, in 
Scotland ; and I had a hard time of it, as M. Legros turned out 
to be a perfect cormorant for information upon the details in 
ev;ery factory we visited. In fact, he wanted to know much more 
than the owners of the establishments were willing to communi- 
cate to strangers. However, we managed somehow to get on 
pretty well, and, no doubt, I picked up a good deal of miscel- 
laneous information. 

It may seem a curious statement to make, but I have always, 
at some time or other, found a practical use for every scrap and 
wrinkle of information I ever gathered in the course of my 
career. 

So also with regard to this particular voyage of inspection 
through Great Britain. Many long years after, Messrs. Morgan 
Brothers, proprietors of the Ironmonger, the Chemist and Druggist, 
the Grocer (of which I was the first editor), and other publications, 
employed me to write a series of descriptive articles on manu- 
facturing and other processes, etc. I then found my merely casual 
experience of some thirty years before of great value to me. In 
1867, Messrs. Groombridge and Sons, Paternoster Row, repub- 
lished these papers of mine, together with others contributed by 
my friends Quin, John C. Brough, Thomas Archer, "W. B. 
Tegetmeier, and W. J. Prowse, in a volume, under the title of 
"England's Workshops." 

" A thing of beauty is a joy for ever," says Keats. A thing 
of utility, you see, may become a source of profit beyond the 
instant occasion. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 113 

London and the other places which I visited in the latter half 
of 1832 made a deep and powerful impression upon me. 

London, which then numbered close upon 1,700,000 inhabitants, 
looked to me like a veritable leviathan of a city. I thought then 
that it must have attained its highest possible point of develop- 
ment. In fact, I thought it was fearfully overgrown. 

Being accustomed to the comparatively small cities on the 
Continent, the size and the teeming industrial population of most 
of the British manufacturing and commercial cities impressed me 
much. 

My companion Legros would not, perhaps could not, see 
matters in the same light. This gentleman was intensely French, 
and Southern French to boot. He knew only three places in the 
world Paris, Lyons, and Marseilles. He would admit that 
Bordeaux and Lille might claim to be named along with these. 
As for London, he confessed it was rather a largish place, but, 
bless you, Paris would soon run up to it, and beat it in a canter. 
As to naming any of the British commercial and industrial 
centres which, moreover, it was easy to see with half an eye were 
on their decline, in the same breath with the chief towns of 
France, no one but a conceited Britisher would ever dream of 
such a thing. 

Poor Legros ! he has long since been gathered to his fathers 
and London has kept on growing until it more than doubles Paris 
in population, and quintuples it in extent. And as for the British 
and industrial commercial centres, why, Glasgow nearly equals 
the joint population of Lyons and Marseilles; and Liverpool, 
Manchester, and Salford are on the high road to the same 
achievement ; whilst Birmingham is larger and more populous 
than either Lyons or Marseilles; and Sheffield and Leeds are fast 
growing to equal these two chief cities of France, after Paris. 

Glasgow, which I may say I saw in 1832 almost in its teens, 
is positively a marvel of surprising growth. It has very nearly 
achieved its six hundred thousand souls. Indeed, there is but one 
place in the world, I believe, not even omitting the American 
cities, which spring up like substantial and enduring giant- 
mushrooms, that outstrips aught else in marvellous expansion 
the capital of Prussia, which has more than quadrupled its 
population since 1830, and is going on fast for one million and 
a quarter ! Berlin thrives, as it were a modern Palmyra, in the 
midst of a sandy desert, apparently without any of the generally 
admitted indispensable elements of a great centre of population 
about it not even possessing a respectable river, but merely a 
species of brook which stagnates its slimy slush painfully and 



114 REMINISCENCES OF 

laboriously along with the aid of artificial sluices yet showing 
an increase within the last half century vaster than that of 
mighty London, in the proportion of eight to five of mighty 
London, with its splendid river and its unrivalled natural site ! 

However, at the time of which I am writing, this was not 
dreamt of even in the wildest visions of imagination run mad. 

One million and a quarter looks handsome enough, one would 
think. Yet, some eleven years ago, in December, 1871, Thiers, 
in his passionate appeal to the "Committee of Initiative" to 
restore Paris to its natural position as the capital of France, 
pleaded as one of the chief reasons that should decide the com- 
mittee to grant his appeal the " fact, that Berlin, which before 
the war of 1870 had numbered only 800,000 souls, had doubled 
its population since ! " This affords a curious proof of the 
lamentable ignorance of even the cleverest men in France, and 
of their absolute lack of calculating and computing power. 

This seems to me the proper place to put in an illustration or 
two of the brilliant talent of ignorance which so many Frenchmen 
would seem to make it a point to cultivate. 

Dr. Blanchard, of the French Academy of Sciences, was 
engaged some ten years ago in deep researches anent the Ureox. 
In the course of his investigations he addressed himself for 
information, among others, to Professor Brand, of St. Petersburg. 
In his notes upon the animal the Professor stated that the 
Aueroclis, or Ureox, is found in Lithuania, also in the Caucasus in 
R^ideln, which is simply the dative plural of Budel, signifying 
herd in German. Well, the eminent French Professor incontinently 
gave the world the interesting information that the Ureox is to be 
met with in the Caucasus, in a locality of the name of Eudeln ! 
" Dans une localite du nom de Eudeln ! " 

I cannot exactly call to mind the year in which the Archi- 
episcopal Palace at Bourges was burnt down. I only know it must 
have been after 1870 and before 1876. There was a most bare- 
faced assertion published then that an important document, a 
most invaluable heirloom of the La Tour d'Auvergne family, had 
perished in the conflagration, no less a document, in fact, than 
the " Order for the Execution of Jesus Christ ! " A copy of it 
was given : " Our Lord Herod, Lieutenant of the Emperor in 
Judea," the precious piece of humbug began. The fact that Herod 
Antipas was simply tetrarch of Galilee, and that Pontius Pilate 
was the Emperor's lieutenant in Judea, might be urged as a 
trifling objection to the authenticity of the document. But this 
was nothing compared to the dates given the 22nd and 23rd day 
of the Ides of March ! What notion could the would-be forger of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 115 

this "historic document" possibly have had how the Romans 
counted the days of the month ? It is perfectly clear that he knew 
naught of Calends, Nones, and Ides. Yet this precious piece 
was given as " authentic " in even respectable French journals, 
and our own Pall Mall Gazette copied it without a word of 
comment ! 

My visit to England, though it paid me well years after, was 
certainly not profitable to me at the time. It was, indeed, one of 
the most foolish acts of my life. It took away some six months 
of my precious time, and, owing mainly to my companion Legros' 
expensive habits, cost me much good money, which might have 
been employed more wisely. 

The beginning of March, 1833, saw me back in Paris, where, 
in a fit of discontent with myself and my late proceedings, I set 
to in earnest to complete my medical studies at last, by attending 
lectures and frequenting the Charite", the Hotel Dieu, and other 
hospitals. 

The medical faculty of Paris could boast then of such men as 
Dupuytren (alas ! to be removed so soon after), the two Andrals, 
Orfila, Royer, and other famous professors. There was also my 
revered master Easpail, the medical philosopher, the justly re- 
nowned chemist, whose philosophical system of medicine I intro- 
duced some twenty years after to the British public, by his own 
desire. Dumas was Professor of Chemistry at the Sorbonne, 
where, among other famous men, Cousin was lecturing on philo- 
sophy, and Villemain on classical literature. Here, surely, was a 
last and a splendid opportunity afforded me to complete and per- 
fect my medical and general education ; and I had mustered at 
last the firm will to do so at least, I thought I had. 

Unhappily, a few weeks after having honestly buckled to work, 
an imperative summons reached me from Germany. 

The academic youth of the great Fatherland had resolved to 
reply in the sternest fashion to the stern measures taken by the 
Confederation against all aspirants and aspirations to freedom; 
notably, to the resolutions of the 28th of June, 1832. 

I obeyed the summons, of course. 

I do not wish to write the history of the attempt of the 3rd 
of April, 1833. It was a wretched affair. I feel heartily ashamed of 
my share in it. I had the good luck to make my way back in safety 
to France. But the Prussian Government, apprised of my par- 
ticipation in the attempted rising, sequestrated the balance of my 
capital in the funds, "upon information furnished, I had subse- 
quently but too much reason to fear, by my saintly ex-guardian, who 
also, I learnt many years later on, literally purloined my library 



116 REMINISCENCES OF 

the last remnant of my maternal portion the friend, to whose 
care I had entrusted it, having had to flee for his life, being 
implicated in the Frankfort affair. I say he had to flee for his 
life. I am quite aware, of course, that no one was executed, and 
that an amnesty was granted some five years after ; but at the 
time matters looked very critical and perilous for the poor 
fellows who fell into the hands of the frightened and enraged 
Confederation. 

In 1840 the sequestration was taken off my investment in the 
Prussian funds. Allured by offers of larger interest, I placed 
the remaining balance in a Hamburg house. The conflagration 
of 1842 made me lose the far greater part of it, and the rest I 
found it but too easy to spend. 

So all I had once called mine was gone from my gaze like a 
beautiful dream. I was awake now, indeed, though unhappily 
never wide-awake. 

I was back in Paris by the middle of April, with about a 
thousand francs in my pocket, pour tout potage, for sole resource. 

Typhoid and marsh fever, euphemistically termed paludian, 
happened at the time to be rather rife in Algiers, the last glorious 
conquest of the Bourbon restoration, and the damnosa h&reditas 
bequeathed by the elder branch to the younger. As the ex- 
perience of the last half century has abundantly proved, these 
delightful favourite twin-daughters of gaunt death, and their 
grim sister dysentery, have an ugly partiality somehow for the 
North African coast, where they would seem to be always rife 
wherever the French pitch their tents. 

In 1833 things were very bad that way, and the French 
Intendance was put rather hard to ij to provide a sufficient staff 
of medical officers not to combat with death exactly, but to 
certify and register it. I say the Military Intendance, for, 
strange to say, perhaps, the French army is destitute of an 
independent Medical Department, the management of the surgical 
service in the army being placed entirely in the hands of the 
Commissariat, which, unhappily, is also the worst conducted 
branch of the military administration. 

Upon my return to Paris, I had a notion that, as I was now 
thrown upon my own exertions, I might, perhaps, find literary 
employment, which might enable me to continue and complete 
my studies, and to start somewhere in France as a medical 
practitioner. My thousand francs I hoped would keep me until 
Cavaignac, who was kind enough to take an interest in me,, 
might find me employment on some journal or otherwise. 

But when I mentioned the matter to M. Andral pere, he pro* 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 117 

posed to me instead that I should go to Algiers as Under- 
Assistant-Surgeon ; he, Bouillaud, Lisfranc, and Honore, kindly 
certifying to my capacity. All these gentlemen pointed out to 
me how a few years' stay in Algiers, though even in the most 
subordinate surgical capacity, might serve to pave the way to 
speedy advancement in after-life. The extensive experience I 
was safe to gather there in camp and hospital must of necessity 
facilitate my future examination ; and, with the prestige of the 
experience gathered, I need not fear but that my career in 
practice would be successful. 

So, in June, 1833, I embarked at Toulon, along with fifteen 
other young men, who could not nay, not one of them even 
boast the very small modicum of medical knowledge and of 
chemical experience that I had managed to gather in my desul- 
tory studies ; but who yet, as well as myself, found themselves 
within a couple of months after our arrival in Algeria placed in 
most difficult positions, such as might have taxed all the skill 
and knowledge and readiness of resource of experienced old 
practitioners. Indeed, these were awful times in the new French 
conquest, and soon told disastrously upon even strong constitu- 
tions. Some two years after I was the only survivor left of the 
sixteen and I was almost a wreck. 

Upon my arrival in the colony I was assigned first to the 
Foreign Legion, with Surgeon-Major Cecaldi for my more 
immediate chief. I had been wofully sea- sick in coming over, 
and my new uniform had been sadly damaged by the sea-water. 
This Italian gentleman saw a direct insult to his high dignity in 
my appearing before him in tarnished regimentals ; and he bore 
me malice from the first to the last day of our acquaintance, and 
strove to the best, or rather the worst of his ability, to make the 
service irksome to me. Luckily, I was mostly detached on 
hospital duty, except for a few months, when I had to attend at 
Moustafa Pasha, and at Camp Kouba ; also, for a short spell, at 
the Infirmary, where, however, my friend Eichacker was my 
immediate superior. When I was detached, as would sometimes 
occur, upon an expedition into the Metidjah, or to Blidah, I was 
my own master, ruling the roast pretty absolutely in the small 
realm of disease, wounds, and death around me ; so that, after 
all, Cecaldi had it not in his power to work me much injury. On 
one occasion I gave that gentleman cause for dissatisfaction, but 
it was unwittingly. 

It was just after my return to camp service from the Caratine 
Hospital, in the City of Algiers, in the Eue Bab-a-Zoun, when 
I had to make a report to Colonel Bernelle, the then Commanding 
Officer of the Foreign Legion, whose residence was just outside 



118 REMINISCENCES OF 

Moustafa Pasha. Colonel Bernelle was one of the six sons of 
General Bernelle, an officer of some distinction in the time of the 
First Empire. 

The Colonel was a fine man and an excellent officer, albeit, 
perhaps, over much given to martinetism. When I came before 
him with my report, he was in an awful humour, and exceedingly 
irritable. The fact was he was suffering agony from a panaria, 
or whitlow. I do not know how it was, but I asked him to let me 
look at the affected finger, which evidently took him rather by 
surprise. Still he stretched out his hand, and let me undo the 
bandage. I saw that the swelling was very close upon ripeness, 
and I asked his permission to open it. After some hesitation it 
is a strange thing how men who will bravely face death will often 
shrink from encountering pain he consented. It was not an 
easy matter to overcome my disinclination to perform the smallest 
operation inflicting pain. In this instance, however, I reflected 
that the momentary pang was safe to put an end to the atrocious 
pain of the whitlow, and made a bold cut. The Colonel made 
a slight grimace, then cried joyfully, " I am in heaven," and 
warmly thanked me when I had dressed the wound. 

Unhappily for me, it turned out that it was Cecaldi who had 
attended the Colonel, and had not judged proper to lay the 
abscess open with the knife ; for which sin of omission for ift 
was in that light Bernelle looked upon it the Colonel now told 
him a bit of his mind, and imprudently mentioned to him that 
I had volunteered to perform, the operation. Well, I thus 
speedily became indebted to that small cut for orders to dance 
attendance every morning upon the road-making detachment 
which was a tiresome and tiring job, involving for some six long 
weeks a three hours' march every morning. 

Colonel Bernelle was grateful for the small service I had 
rendered him, and he wished to give me practical proof of his 
gratitude, which consisted in his advice to me to leave the 
surgical department, and enlist in the Legion. He gave me his 
sacred promise, should I consent, to push me up the first rungs 
of the ladder of promotion. No doubt promotion was rapid in 
the Legion at that period. There were instances of men who 
had risen within three years from the ranks to a lieutenant's 
commission, and, with so powerful and influential a protector 
as the Colonel, I might have had the same good fortune. I am 
dazzled even now when I think to what height I might have 
climbed in the military hierarchy of France. Why, I knew 
Negrier and Duvivier as majors or commandants. They were 
both full generals thirty-four years a^o, when they fell, along 
with several other old Algerian acquaintances of mine, in the 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 119 

frightful days of June, 1848, when striving might and main 
to put down the formidable Socialist or Communist Insurrection 
then raging in Paris the first of a disastrous series, a second 
of which shook Paris to her foundations in 1871 and of which 
a third may be closer upon us than even far-sighted politicians 
can as yet discern. 

Lamoriciere, also, who in after years, in his proud self- 
consciousness, spoke so slightingly of Italian generals and 
Italian troops, and finished a glorious career so lamentably 
at Castelfidardo, was still a simple chef-de-bataillon when I 
knew him first in Algiers. Changarnier was a captain then ; 
so was Eugene Cavaignac, after the days of June chief of the 
French Republic. Bosquet, who, in 1855, shared in the glorious 
laurels of Inkermann, was in 1834 a simple lieutenant in the 
Algerine corps of occupation. All these men rose to high 
distinction why not I? Had I but taken the Colonel's well- 
meant excellent advice, and trusted my star, surely I might 
perchance have lost the battle of Reichshofen ; I might have sur- 
rendered Metz, after a run of the most astonishing blunders ever 
known in the history of war. I flatter myself that I might just 
have turned out the sort of general to lose a great battle under 
the most propitious circumstances, like M'Mahon; or to sur- 
render the strongest fortress in the world garrisoned by a 
powerful army, considerably outnumbering the besieging host, 
like Bazaine. But it clearly was not to be. I always was a 
pechvogel, or lack-luck ; so I declined the Colonel's kind proposal, 
and manfully stuck to the lancet and gallipot. You see I have 
but too often permitted my native diffidence to stand in the way 
of my advancement in life. 

The " Legion Etrangere" was a fine body of men in the main, 
gathered from nearly every part of Europe. It was formed for 
service in Algiers, in 1831, at the end of which year it numbered 
1,500 men rank and file, which number had at the beginning 
of 1833 risen to 3,500. In 1834 we had 5,000 legionaries under 
arms in Algeria. And there were, besides, a few thousands 
whom we had snugly underground by that time ; for fever and 
dysentery played sad havoc among the ill-fated human cattle 
shipped from France to the North African death-stores. 

There were then seven battalions of the Legion four German, 
which included many other nationalities ; one Polish, one Italian, 
and one Spanish battalion. The latter was generously ceded 
to the Queen Regent of Spain, after Valdes* repeated defeats 
by Zumalacarregui. Some time after the entire Legion went 



120 REMINISCENCES OF 

the same way to share pretty well-nigh the same sad fate with 
the English auxiliaries led to the aid of Maria Christina by 
General de Lacy Evans. Omelets cannot be made, of course, 
without breaking eggs ; but there are really some omelets that 
had better not be made at all and this Maria Christina-Isabella 
Segunda omelet was surely one of them. There are also some 
eggs that might be used for better purposes than omelets after 
the French fashion aux diconfitures. 

The men of the Legion were, as a rule, brave to excess a set 
of dare-devil fellows. Many of them were above the common 
herd men of birth and education, political refugees, for the most 
part ; some had blundered into social sins, offences, and crimes, 
and had sought and found a refuge from the pursuer without, 
and the pursuer within their own heart and mind, in a soldier's 
venturesome life, and in the excitement of fierce strife. There 
was a notable instance of a Bavarian officer who had made a 
mistake about the ownership of the regimental cash-box, which 
he found out a little late in the day, when part of the cash had 
been spent by him. He had joined the Legion in '31, as a private ; 
yet by the middle of 1834 he was a full lieutenant, with every 
prospect of a brilliant career before him. He was a full captain 
when he fell fighting in Spain, in 1836, I believe. 

To use a vulgar expression, most of the unhappy legionaries 
had brought their pigs to a pretty market at least for so long as 
they belonged to the mere rank and file. The life and position of 
these men might be summed up briefly, in a general way, as 
harassing marches and killing marsh fevers, hard work and 
harder knocks, small pay and scanty fare, with microscopic 
chances of rare, telescopically distant loot. 

I think the pay and rations of a full private in the Legion 
were about eightpence a day, with one pound and a half of 
doubtful brown bread, half a pound of still more dubious meat, 
about a pint of light Spanish wine, a pinch of salt, an occasional 
handful of rice, and wood for cooking. On entering the service, 
the Ministry of War graciously bestowed upon the recruit about 
1 12s. in articles of clothing, etc., which constituted his kit. 
This was called " la premiere mise." To keep himself up in shoes 
shirts, etc., one penny per day out of the eight was paid into his 
so-called " masse ; " every five days he received the munificent 
pay of threepence-halfpenny to provide himself with tobacco and 
other luxuries. One halfpenny, I think, went for washing; the 
remaining fivepence were spent in the purchase of white bread 
for the soup in the morning, and onions, potatoes, beans, maca- 
roni, vermicelli, lard, etc., for the afternoon's meal. It was not, 
perhaps, quite so extraordinary then as it may look, that these 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 121 

men should occasionally try to do a bit of looting on a small 
scale on their own individual account, and that they should 
develop a tendency to walk off now and then o' nights with a fowl 
or a sheep belonging to a " friendly " Arab, who would rush into 
camp in the morning complaining with clamorous lamentations 
of his grievous loss, and cursing the rascally thief as loudly and 
deeply as his archiepiscopal Eminence of Rheims cursed the 
purloiner of his ring to very little good purpose, however, as it 
was next to impossible to " identify " the guilty party with an 
efficient staff of " alibi-provers " always ready to hand ; and as the 
officers mostly partook of the dainty fare thus surreptitiously 
provided, it stood to reason that no very strenuous effort was 
ever likely to be made to bring the offender to condign punish- 
ment. I crave permission here to offer a philosophical remark of 
deep truth : there are certain states and conditions in life, in 
which nothing can taste sweeter than stolen fowl or purloined 
mutton properly cooked experto crede. 

Algiers has, indeed, from the very beginning, been a damnosa 
hcereditas bequeathed to France by the elder branch of the 
Bourbons. Clauzel, who was sent by the Government of July to 
succeed Bourmont, gave it as his deliberate opinion that the best 
to be done with the new conquest was to restore it to the hands 
of its former owners. As an alternative, he proposed a sensible 
plan of colonisation. Of course the men of July dared not follow 
either counsel, and Clauzel had to be recalled. Savary, Due de 
Eovigo, who ruled the roast from 1831-1833, tried the iron hand 
without the velvet glove, and failed most signally. His cruelty, 
his harshness, his overbearing haughtiness in brief, his arbitrary 
despotism, drove the unhappy natives to rise in insurrection. 
They found an excellent leader in Abd-el-Kader, who actually 
compelled the proud invaders to acknowledge his absolute sove- 
reignty over the whole of Western Algeria, including all Arabian 
tribes up to the river Shelif. This was in February, 1834. War 
soon broke out again ; but that is matter of history, which does 
not concern me here. 

In 1833 I had, however, to go on service with more than one 
expedition into the Metidjah, a well-watered fertile plain south of 
Algiers, measuring some fifty English miles by twelve. We had 
some fighting there. On one occasion we got rather severely 
handled, having twelve men killed and about sixty wounded more 
or less severely in fact, I have a notion we rather got the worst 
of it. I was slightly amazed, somewhat amused, and not a little 
indignant, when I read afterwards in the French papers a glowing 
account of a severe brush with the Arabs, in which we were stated 
to have inflicted heavy losses upon the enemy, suffering ourselves 



122 REMINISCENCES OF 

very little indeed only two men wounded. Sic semper " Eien 
de si menteur qu'un bulletin. " It was the same with the accounts 
of the health of the army, which was almost invariably reported 
to be good, at the very time when fever, dysentery, and diarrhoea 
and Broussais were clearing our hospitals at a rare rate. 

It is always thus with the French maximising their successes, 
minimising their reverses. With us in England the case is very 
different. We are over-apt to run into the other extreme. We 
maximise our reverses. An ordinary repulse with us becomes a 
" disgraceful defeat," and when we lose men by sickness we have 
a tendency to double the loss instead of striving to conceal or 
extenuate it or gloss it over, as the French invariably do. It was 
so in the time of the Crimean War. Ever since Sterne invented 
the phrase, the English have had an unhappy habit of exalting 
the way in which matters are supposed to be ordered in France, 
and of disparaging the English way of doing things. In the 
Crimean War, English journalists could hardly devise terms of 
reproach sufficiently severe to mark their indignant sense of the 
wretched shortcomings of every department of the British Army 
munagement, whilst pitching the key very high indeed in their 
adulatory strains in praise of the admirable manner in which the 
French were ordering these things. I, who by experience knew 
this view of the case to be based upon the merest delusion and 
deception, used to laugh but it was a bitter laugh. I can only 
say that in my time there was not a worse-managed commissariat 
to be found anywhere (I verily believe) than in the French army ; 
and from what I have had occasion of late to see in France, there 
remains much to be done there yet to screw things up to the 
present British standard. I may conscientiously affirm also that 
although the general sanitary condition of the English army is 
certainly not always what it might be, the health of the French 
army, as a rule, leaves still much more to be desired. 

The greater part of my time I was detached as assistant to the 
hospital surgeons, such as Doctors Marjolais and Payen of the 
Caratine, the elder Moneras or Monneras,* of the Salpetriere, 
Fleschus and Antonini, of the Jardin du Dey, and a few other 
gentlemen of less note in the medical service. 

All these sons of .^JEsculapius, whom I had to attend as 
assistant, were more or less, but generally more followers of 
Broussais, and the amount of lanceting and leeching perpetrated 

My memory in matters of names is occasionally slightly phonetic, 
especially with reference to the men with whom I came in contact at 
this period of my career. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 123 

under their truly Sangradian sway was something "awfully" 
appalling. 

Many long years after, and many long years since, a friend of 
mine started an albumen factory in St. Pancras, the technical 
management of which he entrusted to my hands. We got our 
" first material " from the London slaughter-houses, but we soon 
found the price run a little too high for profitable working. 
So we gave up this sanguinary business. Had we but had 
something like the Algerian military hospitals in my time to fall 
back upon for our raw material, at the low estimate in which 
human blood was held there, we might have driven a roaring 
trade. 

In the medical code of these distinguished men blood was the 
peccant matter that had to be removed and it was removed at 
a rare "gyaun ghyte " gait. The patient, too, was generally 
removed, but that was no business of ours, so long as he was 
properly expedited selon les regies. And that reproduction of the 
sap of life might not interfere with the process of depletion, this 
latter was supplemented by a somewhat arbitrary graduated 
scale of starvation, ranging from semi to total. One of my chiefs 
for instance, the elder M. Monneras, of the Salpetriere, would on 
the fifth or sixth, nay, on the eighth or ninth day, when the fever 
had seemingly left the patient I verily believe, sometimes, 
because there was not sufficient blood and vigour left in the poor 
fellow to work out a regular fit graciously order "la moitie 
d'une pomme cuite le matin, diete le soir," which gave half a 
baked apple, two cupfuls of weak broth, and a quart or two of 
lemonade for whole and sole daily sustenance. Another chief of 
mine, Dr. Antonini, of the Jardin du Dey, had gained for himself 
the nickname of " regime maigre," because he used to tack these 
words almost invariably to the order of " diete absolue," sternly 
enjoined by him for the first week or so in nearly every case 
under his medical care. The nourishment supplied to "con- 
valescents " recovering despite fever, etc., depletion, and starva- 
tion, was meagre in the extreme. It ranged from four ounces of 
white bread, divided into two portions for morning and evening, 
a small basin of soup (rice, potatoes, vermicelli, etc.), and a sip or 
two of wine, up to one pound and a half of bread, half a pound of 
boiled beef, and a pint and a half of wine per diem, which was 
the so-called full portion, as a rule only given on the patient's 
last day in hospital. The gradations intervening proceeded from 
the so-called quarter portion to the half and three-quarters 
portion. Besides this rich fare, each patient had about a pint 



124 REMINISCENCES OF 

and a half or a quart of broth. For drink, the fever patients had 
about half a gallon of lemonade, occasionally with a glass of wine 
added (limonade vineuse) ; those suffering from dysentery or 
diarrhoea had rice-water instead, sweetened, and with gum arabic 
added (eau de riz gommeuse). Patients who had attained the 
three-quarters had ptisane commune (decoction of liquorice root) 
for drink. 

One of the most truly beautiful features of this " rational " (!) 
and " physiological " (! !) system of treatment was, that the poor 
devils who could not take kindly to starvation had to part with 
part of their kit (shirt, shoes, etc.), to buy food of the infirmiers, 
or of their fellow-patients in an advanced state of convalescence, 
now, in their turn, compelled to sell the very food and wine 
ordered them with a view to the restoration of their strength, 
that they might thereby procure the means of buying back the 
shirts, shoes, etc., with which they had parted under the pangs of 
hunger. For a man who contemned and abominated this vile, 
cruel folly, it was hard indeed to stand by quietly to see con- 
structive murder perpetrated before his eyes. I found it occa- 
sionally so, and I was not always proof against the strong natural 
temptation to interfere in my small way. On one occasion (as, 
Heaven pardon me all my transgressions, on many other occa- 
sions) I had thus given food and drink on the sly to one of 
Monneras' patients that is, I thought I had done it on the sly 
but a wretched infirmier had detected me, a sycophantic villain, 
who reported his discovery to the chief. I was consigne i.e., 
confined to the precincts of the hospital for eight days, to teach 
me not to meddle with my chief's system of treatment. In the 
bitterness of my heart I wrote on the wall of my room, as high up 
as I could reach, standing on my camp bed : 

Perturbateurs du genre humain, 
Qui etes sans misericorde : 
Eussiez-vous au cou la corde 
Que vous tenez toujours en main ! 

This soothed my ruffled feelings. 

I wonder whether this silent outburst of my righteous wrath 
may still be extant. If I have a chance I'll go and see. 

Our general pharmaco-medicinal armoury was not over-richly 
stocked,* our chief sheet-anchors of salvation being, in a great 

* Not that I mean to say we were not amply supplied with all the 
staple aids of disease and death, which, at the time I am now speaking 
of, made up our glorious pharmacopoeia, but that, as a rule, we dipped 
only here and there, and rather sparingly, all things considered. And, 
a fact to be placed to our credit, we eschewed complex prescriptions. 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 125 

measure, confined to sulphate of quinine, a few preparations of 
antimony, mercury, copper, etc., a small assortment of acrids, 
narcotics, and narcotico-acrids, rhubarb, and a few so-called 
bitter tonics, cantharides, mustard, linseed, ointments, liniments, 
lotions, etc. All these were provided and administered in their 
various ways by a stiff and starch routine, from which no 
departure was allowed. I remember how wofully I got snubbed 
when I once took upon myself to substitute camphor for sulphur 
and mercury in certain ointments. I was strictly enjoined never 
to try that new-fangled trick again. 

Quinine was of course our great, I may say our only, febrifuge. 
It was given in doses of from nine to fifteen grains of the sulphate 
as a rule ; pretty stiffish, I think ; though I myself, at a later 
period, have foolishly taken twice and even three times as much 
at a go and have suffered for it accordingly. 

Blood was drawn by the pound " Saignee de seize onces," 
was rather a familiar order to me. In those days many French- 
men would still obstinately decline dropping the old popular 
denominations, at least so far as larger weights, etc., were in 
question. 

Leeches, these interesting pretty creatures, whom Harry 
Leigh so sweetly and affectionately invites "to drink," were 
ordered in batches of fifteen or twenty on the brow and the 
temples, and up to thirty and more upon the epigastric region. 
I do not exaggerate ; only that in my division, and in the wards 
of some other foreign assistants, we juniors, who practically were 
at least we thought so in a better position to judge of the true 
state and condition of the patients than our chiefs, who saw them 
only twice a day, and had to trust to our reports, would often 
take upon ourselves to mitigate the severity of our orders, and let 
a poor fellow off now and then with a loss of four instead of twelve 
or sixteen ounces of his precious blood, and with four or five 
leeches instead of twenty or thirty. The chiefs rarely cared to 
see whether their orders had been obeyed ; and we had, in case of 
need, always the capricious obstinacy of the leech to fall back 
upon, which will often refuse to bite. 

In the course of my career through the world, I have had 
occasion to observe that virtue is generally its own truest reward. 
Leeches are rather an expensive item, and the liberality with 
which the Intendance allowed us to expend them upon our patients 
was a brilliant proof of the solicitude of a paternal government 
for the well-being of the men who had to fight the country's 
battles. 

Now, as I have just stated, we juniors differed from our 



126 REMINISCENCES OF 

chiefs with respect to the expediency of large leechings. The 
leeches had to be ordered, however, as they were put down 
in our books. Now the question naturally arose, What was 
to be done with our rather fast accumulating stock of 
hirudines ? We could not well eat them : they are not nice in a 
stew even, along with snails ; nor will frying along with onions 
make them a palatable dish.* To throw them away would have 
been an inexcusable waste of valuable matter. So we simply 
sold them back to the officier comptable of the hospital at third 
and half price a proceeding satisfactory to all parties concerned; 
the administration getting the required supply of leeches at a 
moderate fixed rate, the officier comptdble netting a nice little 
profit, our chiefs having the satisfaction of ordering a handsome 
number of leeches in honour of their great master, Broussais, 
their poor patients having at least some chance left them of 
recovering, and we ourselves reaping the reward of our " virtue " 
in a by no means trifling addition to our rather scanty pay. 

Dr. Fleschus, one of the two chief surgeons of the staff of the 
Occupation Corps Dr. Stephanopoli being the other secured 
my valuable services for a time in the officers' ward at the Jardin 
du Dey, over which he himself presided. Lieutenant-Colonel 
Neumann, of the Foreign Legion, came in with a damaged leg, 
and I had the high honour of specially attending to the case of 
this distinguished officer, who was a German Alsatian by birth. 
So, for the matter of that, was my chief, whose real name, I verily 
believe, was Fleischhaus (Fleshhouse). But many Alsatians were 
at that time rather ashamed of their honest German patronymics, 
and tried to recast them into French. 

This has been a human foible at other periods of time as well, 
more especially in the Middle Ages, and more particularly in 
Germany, among the learned. In the time of the Reformation, 
Luther was about the only great man who did not even trans- 
mogrify his honest commonplace patronymic by tacking to it a 
Latin termination at least. His great fellow-reformer in the 
faith, honest Philip Blackearth (Schwarzerd), must, forsooth, 
don the name of Melanchthon; Chauvin latinized himself into 
Calvinus ; Koenigsberg (King's mount) into Regiomontanus ; 
good plain Hausschein (Houseshine) fancied he'd shine more 
brightly as CEcolampadius ; the excellent mathematician Rauch- 

* To try and prove all things is a time-honoured injunction. Do not 
try leeches, I say, except to a very limited extent, in local inflammation 
and painful swellings. But, whatever you do, do not try them as an 
article of food. THEY ARE NASTY. Experto crede. The gray garden 
snail makes a delicious dish, the frog is an acknowledged delicacy but 
the leech Faugh! and avaunt! 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 127 

fass (Reekfoot) essayed to throw dust into the eyes of the world, 
instead of smoke, by taking upon himself the grand Greek 
style of Dasypodius. Why, then, should blame attach to Dr. 
Fleischhaus for passing himself off as Fleschus ? 

No matter whether Fleischhaus or Fleschus, he was the 
second chief surgeon of the Staff, and a very great man indeed, 
and most sound on the Sangrado-starvation theory of the treat- 
ment and cure of disease. The Lieutenant-Colonel had some 
little knowledge of me, and it was by his special request that 
Dr. Fleschus asked Dr. Antonini to cede me to him for the time 
of the Lieutenant-Colonel's illness. 

Dr. Fleschus was wonderfully stiff and unyielding upon the 
point of his absolute sway and command of his own wards, and 
he would brook no remonstrance against his most arbitrary 
edicts. While an officer was sick and under his care, he insisted 
upon being obeyed by him in every way. 

Now, poor Colonel Neumann found that the damage to his leg 
did not interfere with his desire for food and drink, but the 
autocrat of the ward held that eating and drinking, until he 
thought proper to allow it, would be death to his patient. He 
told the starving officer roundly that he was quite aware that he 
was the proper man to command a regiment, or, for the matter of 
that, an army ; but he knew nothing of the treatment of disease, 
and so, until he got better, he would have to command and 
restrain his appetite. 

About the third day of my attendance, Neumann began to 
fret so much, and to crave so intensely for sustenance, that I was 
afraid it might injuriously affect the cure of his leg. So I 
resolved to risk braving the ire of the Jupiter Touans of the 
ward. I roasted a chicken in the hospital kitchen, where I 
was a frequent visitor, shoved the article, along with a loaf of 
bread and a litre of wine, into my field-bag, and made the Colonel 
as happy as a king. Fortunately, he was waited on by his own 
servant, so there was no danger of betrayal. From that time 
forward I was the Colonel's regular purveyor. He remained 
altogether six weeks under the care of Fleschus, who he swore to 
me would have starved him to death in less than one-third of the 
time. Indeed, even in the last fortnight of his stay at the Jardin 
du Dey, the doctor would not allow him more than half a bottle 
of light wine, with a small modicum of food a day. Fleschus 
was quite proud of his success in this case. He over and over 
again told the Colonel, in my presence, that had he eaten and 
drunk as he wished, he would be a dead man by this time. He 
also told the Colonel that to ensure his orders being strictly 
obeyed, he had had the servant watched that nothing should be 



128 REMINISCENCES OF 

introduced into the Colonel's room surreptitiously. We were 
quite aware of this fact, as the sergeant of the guard had once 
kindly warned the servant not to make any attempt of the kind. 
Fleschus never suspected me ; for by that time I had learnt the 
wisdom of howling with the wolves, and I professed to swear by 
him and his mode of treatment. It was hard, though, to keep 
from laughing outright when the dear old man was thus con- 
ceitedly bragging, whilst the Colonel was making faces at me. 
Had it not been for my " gross dereliction of duty," as it might 
be termed, from a strictly moral point of view, I should like to 
know what would have become of the unhappy patient in the 
hands of this blind theorist. Not that it mattered much in the 
end, for poor Neumann fell afterwards in Spain. 

In the fall of 1834 my connection with the Legion was alto- 
gether severed, and I was assigned as fixed assistant to my chief, 
Dr. Antonini, with whom I had become a great favourite, and 
who promised me that I should at no distant date be promoted 
to a full acting surgeon-assistantship. But it was not to be. 

I found myself suddenly prostrated by a formidable attack of 
the worst form of fever. My chief gave me his very best care 
and attention. A special infirmier was appointed to wait upon 
me, which I would gladly have dispensed with, as his constant 
presence in the room, and his unremittent watchfulness, hindered 
the pliarmacien a good-natured fellow from supplying me 
surreptitiously with food and wine, for which I had a fearful 
craving. Antonini, in his truly murderous kindness, restricted 
me for days to a few spoonfuls of wretched meagre broth, and 
half a gallon to three quarts of lemonade a-day much too little 
to assuage my unquenchable thirst. In this one particular, how- 
ever, my infirmier yielded to my supplications, and brought me 
himself another half-gallon or so of lemonade a-day. 

I was bled three times within five days twenty ounces, and 
sixteen, and twelve ounces. Antonini, with his own skilled 
hands, put on thirty lively leeches, and kept pertinaciously by 
my bedside, until the bloodthirsty wretches had all of them had 
ample time to bite, without my being able to take even one of 
them off. 

Antonini gave me large doses of quinine, and in my anxiety 
to get rid of this dreadful fever, I managed to procure and to 
take still larger doses, which I was quite sure the chief would 
never have sanctioned, had he but known it. It was all in vain 
and I simply added quinism to the effects of the fever. 

The abdominal viscera swelled beyond all reasonable bounds ; 
my muscles shrank more and more ; dropsical swelling of the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 129 

legs set in, and there were ominous signs of a tendency to ana- 
sarca. My appetite, erst so fierce, grew less and less, until I 
at last lost the very desire for food. My strength fell off day by 
day. I suffered from the most distressing dyspnoea. The 
wretched fever would now and then cease for a brief period, only 
to come back again to fall upon me with redoubled force. 

In a few short weeks I was a mere wreck of my former self. 
Antonini decided to send me to Toulon as a last chance of 
salvation. He really had a liking for me, and I in return loved 
the man though not the physician. "When we parted, we both 
wept. It was a parting for ever, for we never met again. He 
was a powerful-looking man. Besides the nickname of regime 
maigre, they used to call him also le brasseur, the brewer, on. 
account of his large frame and robust appearance. Yet he also 
succumbed, as I was informed years after. 

Algiers has at all times since the conquest been but a charnel- 
house to the French. If they could only bring their pride down 
to the point of giving it up altogether for a bad spec ! Why, 
they are always talking of revanche for 1870. Let them offer 
their brilliant colony as a free gift to the Germans : if they 
accept, the French will be fnore than amply revenged upon their 
hereditary foes. 

In Toulon, matters did not mend with me for a time. 

To break my back altogether, a humane administration thought 
it the most merciful course to dismiss me the service, so that I 
might no longer need worry my mind with anxious thoughts 
about returning to my duties. There was clearly no more juice 
left in this particular orange : why not then throw away the 
useless peel ? 

The game seemed indeed to be up with me. 

It is not an original remark, but it is a true one : I have never 
feared death, which to me is simply an inevitable incident in life. 
Janua mortis porta novce vitce. But I dread dying, and I have 
an unconquerable objection to being buried, no matter where, on 
principle ; but at this particular time I abominated the very notion 
of a grave in Toulon. 

At this juncture Dr. Hermann, who had served in the Legion, 
was passing through Toulon on his way to Paris. He enjoyed 
the private friendship of the Maritime Prefect of Toulon, whom 
he had several years before cured of a grave disorder. 

He came to visit the hospital, where he saw me and took 
compassion upon me, I had been for five weeks his assistant at 
Camp Kouba, and had given him satisfaction. 

Dr. Hermann was a kind-hearted man and a skilful physician. 

E 



130 REMINISCENCES OF 

He held Broussais in utter abhorrence, which, indeed, was the 
main reason for his quitting the French service, as he was 
at daggers drawn with Cecaldi and the other leaders of the 
" physiological " school. 

He carefully studied my case. The upshot was that he 
strongly advised me to take arsenic, which will succeed occa- 
sionally in desperate cases where even quinine fails, and which is 
certainly the most efficacious agent against quinism. Experto 
crede for, though it might seem a risky remedy to take, I un- 
hesitatingly went in for it. I took it in the form of arseniate of 
soda, which I, for my own person, prefer vastly to the solution or 
liquor. 

The effect was truly marvellous. By Hermann's advice I took 
the comparatively large dose of one-eighth of a grain just before 
my fever paroxysm was due. It remained due, and has remained 
due now for over forty-seven years, and I devoutly wish the debt 
may never, never be discharged. And this certainly could not 
possibly be twisted into a case of post ergo propter. It was the 
direct effect of that truly wonderful agent. Hermann at once 
reduced the dose by one-half one-sixteenth of a grain, to wit. 
The second day I began to feel again that my abdomen was not 
altogether merely a huge liver, but that I had other portions of 
my digestive apparatus left me. In one week's time my appetite 
rose to the point of " ravenous." As a general rule I have 
through life been a delicate eater, rather choice in the selection 
and preparation of my victuals ; but at this juncture, with the 
fierce arsenic-born craving for food upon me, all was fish that 
came to my net all eatables were gladly taken in and done for. 
They gave me what I asked for, and I am afraid I had hardly 
ever done asking for more. Poor little Oliver Twist would have 
been nowhere had he entered into competition with me just then. 
The distressing dyspnoea left me, and I could once more breathe 
freely. The swelling of the liver subsided, all traces of anasarca 
vanished, almost as by magic, and my denuded bones began fast 
to put on a renewed fleshy covering. I gained strength apace. 
I could come forth once more from my gloomy sick-room, to walk 
out into God's all-beautiful temple of Nature, to bathe in the 
limpid air of the bright Mediterranean shore, to bask in the life- 
giving beams of the all-glorious mother of our earth. The 
sensation of recovery from, a long racking and sapping illness is 
indescribably pleasurable. It may seem paradoxical, but I truly 
believe that people who have never had an hour's illness in life 
pay a heavy price for the exemption in missing the most 
exquisite bliss that can be dispensed to man by an all-beneficent 
Providence. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 131 

But now, with the hope of life revived within me, came the 
racking reflection that I was bankrupt in purse, and that many 
months might pass ere I could reasonably hope to be readmitted 
to the service ; for in that fierce fight with death my constitution 
had been so broken and shattered, and my prostration of body and 
mind had been so entire, that I felt instinctively my convalescence 
must be slow. What should I do then, what could I do to sustain 
the life yet barely restored to me ? In my distress I cast about 
for ways and means in every direction. By Hermann's advice I 
memorialised the administration to permit me to go back to the 
Jardin du Dey, to recover health and strength, and to give my 
services gratis meanwhile. Antonini, to whom I wrote upon the 
subject, warmly supported my petition. It was of no avail. I 
received the usual official regrets, along with a cool intimation 
that it was strong, healthy, active young surgeons they wanted in 
Algiers, not broken-down invalids (I had been invalidated in the 
zealous and fearless discharge of my duty but no matter) ; that 
perhaps hereafter, should I be able to show a clean bill of recovered 
health and strength, my application might be taken into con- 
sideration. Nay, in the heartless impertinence of official officious- 
ness, I was kindly advised to complete my medical studies at 
Montpellier, a most favourable place for convalescents, pass my 
examination, and petition the Home Secretary for authorisation 
to practise in France, pleading my services in Algiers in support 
of my request. 

Balzac makes his Gobseck say to Maxime de Trailles: "Ce 
n'est pas du sang qui coule dans vos veines ; c'est de la boue." 
From my experience of men and their acts and deeds, in the 
higher and highest official regions in France, I could swear that, 
in my time at least, it was certainly not the warm life-blood of 
man, but a sluggish mixture of fish and snake blood with snail 
slime, which was stagnating through the red-tape and indiarubber 
circulatory system of the officials. 

What ransom will not a man readily give for his life ? After 
a hard inward struggle I resolved to put my pride in my pocket. 
I sent an urgent appeal to Madame. The reply came it was 
from my saintly ex-guardian. That exemplary man wrote that, 
although after my disgraceful and ungrateful (!) behaviour at our 
last interview he would stand justified before the forum of his 
own conscience were he to act upon his original resolve never 
again to hold communication with me, yet as an earnest though 
humble follower of " Him who both preached and practised for- 
giveness" oh, the sickening hypocrisy of these sham-creed- 
mongers ! he would for this once, in compliance with the earnest 
wish of his dear wife, depart from that resolution ; and in merciful 

K 2 



132 REMINISCENCES OF 

consideration of my present urgent need he forwarded me a draft 
for 1,000 francs, with -the distinct explicit intimation that this 
must positively be the last time that I ventured to " annoy" them 
with " begging letters," as no notice whatever would be taken of 
any future application. 

I was in an exceptionally irritable mood when this precious 
epistle reached me ; so, of the several courses I might have pur- 
sued in this affair, I selected the very worst. I sent back the 
draft, torn in pieces, and I wrote to Madame and her saintly 
spouse separate letters couched in the bitterest language, and 
accusing them without circumlocution of having cruelly despoiled 
and robbed me in brief, closing every avenue to the remotest 
chance of future reconciliation or reconsideration of our relative 
positions. I was always wrong-headed, always acting upon the 
foolish impulse of the moment. 

As I said before, Dr. Hermann was on terms of friendship 
with the Maritime Prefect of Toulon. On the evening of the 
day when I had so hastily sent off the letters above referred to, 
he came to tell me that the Duke of Orleans had just arrived in 
Toulon, where it was likely he would stay for a few days. He 
advised me to appeal to his Eoyal Highness for reconsideration of 
my case. He had already, through his friend the Prefect, secured 
an audience for me. 

The Prefect was kind enough to introduce me to his Koyal 
Highness, who received me most affably, and expressed his 
sympathy with me and my sad state. He graciously promised 
to intercede for me with the authorities. The result was that a 
few days after 1 received six months' pay, etc. (about 40), and a 
promise of future reinstatement in the service, conditional upon 
my perfect recovery. 

The Duke of Orleans was then in his twenty-fifth year; he 
seemed to have the most brilliant prospects before h^m. He was 
noble and generous, and the most liberal-minded and open-handed" 
of the family. But for the fatal accident of July 13, 1842, there 
is a probability that there would not have been a revolution in 
1848, or, if there had, it might have eventuated simply in the 
substitution of the son for the father, and the inauguration of a 
true constitutional government in France so that that glorious 
land might have been spared the horrid nightmare of the Lower 
Empire. 

It was spring, 1839. In the round of my peregrinations 
through France I had again come to Paris. Though still con- 
nected with the Eepublican party, and often employed on Ee- 
publican papers, notably the National, to translate from the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 133 

English and German journals;* I troubled my mind but little 
about active politics. In literature and journalism I found ample 
occupation to give me, despite rather indifferent pay, sufficient 
means of subsistence. 

My spare time I passed mostly in the Charite, in the division 
of the junior Dr. Andral, still with a view to ultimately taking 
my degree. 

One day the Duke of Orleans came to visit the hospital, when 
I happened to be there. His Royal Highness, who had an excel- 
lent memory for facts and faces, remembered that, and also 
where, he had met me before. He was kind enough to con- 
gratulate me upon my vastly improved looks, and inquired how 
it was that I had not been reinstated in the service yet. I told 
the Prince, in reply, that I was still studying for my examination, 
as I preferred to go back with my full degree. Andral, who was 
always most kind to me, benevolently remarked on the occasion, 
that it was my diffidence alone which stood in the way of my 
going up to pass. 

I observed that the Duke looked careworn and that there was 
a shade of anxiety on his brow certainly not altogether without 
cause. Indeed, things did not look particularly bright for the 
Citizen-King, although it could not well be said that the Republican 
party pure and simple gave special cause for anxiety just then. 
Arraand Carrel had been dead some two years and a half. Godef roi 
Cavaignac was in London, where he had sought and found a 
refuge since July, 1835. Heinrich Heine had since 1836 become a 

* In the course of my long career I have been employed on journals 
of every shade of opinion from Republican to Absolutist. But in the 
case of any except Republican and Liberal papers, it has always been 
simply in the capacity of a translator, excerptor, or summarist. It was 
wholly and solely in this capacity that, at the instance of my friend 
Hippolyte Battliere, I consented to work on the Observateur de Londres, 
a reactionary weekly, started in London in 1848, by Herr von Klindworth, 
one of the most active and most capable political agents of the period, 
then a refugee from France, where he had been Councillor of State and 
one of Guizot's right-hand men. It was Prince Metternich who found 
the 2,000 to start the paper with. It did not take, however, and had 
soon to be discontinued for want of funds. All I did for it was to write, 
for meagre pay, summaries of English and German news, dressed up in 
vernacular French. 

A few years after, some of the ultra-austere and immaculate Re- 
publican refugees in London used to throw this into my teeth as a high 
crime and misdemeanour. Even some of my best friends blamed me 
for having worked on the paper. Had I been the editor and manager 
of the Observateur, I could not have been hauled over the coals in worse 
fashion. Yet I had at the time actually declined an alluring offer made to 
me by the Prince through Klindworth. 



134 REMINISCENCES OF 

-pensioner on the Treasury of the Foreign Office. Ledru-Bollin, 
who had made his mark in 1832 by his famous legal opinion 
condemnatory of the state of siege then proclaimed in Paris, 
remained still a simple popular pleader and a rising oppositionist. 
Louis Blanc had not yet dealt his damaging blow of the "Histoire 
de dix Ans." Lamartine had not even quite accomplished his 
progress from Conservatism to Liberal-Conservatism ; besides, he 
was more of a poet than of a politician. Armand Marrast, then 
chief editor of the National, the only Eepublican leader en presence 
whose talent and energy might make him formidable to a shaky 
government, was bourgeois to the very marrow of his bones. 

I say Lamartine was more of a poet than of a politician. He 
was a thoroughly honest, well : meaning man, by no means of the 
very highest order of genius. He was also, in a great measure, 
weighed down by financial difficulties. He never was a truly 
dangerous political antagonist. Judged as a poet, I, for my own 
part, must candidly confess that, with the solitary exception of 
" Jocelin," which I read in the fall of 1835, when in full con- 
valescence, when everything looked bright and beautiful to me, I 
liked his poetic effusions but indifferently well. I was repeatedly 
in his company, and I know that he thought no small beer of him- 
self in any line. I verily believe he was possessed by an unalter- 
able conviction that he was first chop at everything but notably 
at oratory and high statesmanship. Like Armand Marrast, he 
was the very incarnation of Philistinism, in the German accepta- 
tion of the term. He perpetrated, among other poetic offences, a 
Fifth Canto of Childe Harold ! a lycopodium flash essaying to 
emulate sheet lightning. Well, there is no accounting for the- 
vagaries of men. Did not the late Chevalier de Chatelain attempt 
Shakespeare ? I do not know how far he went with his version. 
I think I once came across a translation of " Macbeth " supposed 
to be by him, which was fearfully and wonderfully done. To give 
an instance, as far as I can call to mind upon the spur of the 
moment, the 

Lay on, Macduff; 
And damn'd be he that first cries, Hold ! enough, 

was transmogrified somehow into an invitation addressed to- 
Macduff I have a violent suspicion it was to M. Macduff by 
the murderous thane, to come on " a la bataille," with an intima- 
tion tacked to it that the first to give in should be held a " vile 
canaille " which certainly made a pretty rhyme. Being on this 
theme, I remember I once stumbled upon a choice bit of French 
quotation from Shakespeare. It was in a feuilleton tale by 
TJchard, based upon the career of John Law, the wondrous Scot. 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 135 

who scotched France, the skilled financier who but for lack of 
success would have turned the Father of Waters into a Pactolus. 
The distinguished author of this tale rendered "Frailty, thy 
name is woman" by " Fragilite*, c'est le nom d'une femme." 

To return. Notwithstanding this favourable conjuncture and 
apparently smooth and tranquillising aspect of affairs, things did 
not look particularly bright for Louis Philippe. 

The King's petty huckstering personal policy and his per- 
tinacious meddling and muddling had in the end made it 
difficult to find a Ministry that would tamely submit to the 
Crown's interference in and with everything. And whenever an 
administration had been formed upon the tacit understanding 
that the chief of the State was to have it all his own way in the 
Cabinet, such administration could not command the confidence 
of even Chambers elected upon the narrowest franchise and by 
the grossest corruption. 

Thus the Ministry presided over by that subtle and supple 
statesman, si jamais il en fut, Count Mole, was forced to give 
way in the face of a strange coalition of the doctrinaires with the 
tiers-parti and the Left. 

Mole's forced resignation led to one of the very gravest 
Ministerial crises in the history of the Orleans rule. 

It was terminated provisionally on the 1st of April, by a 
temporary provisorium which truly bore the peculiar character 
of its date. Some of the small wits of the Boulevards con- 
temptuously dubbed it " le ministere des poissons d'Avril." 

Day after day the crisis continued, and week after week. It 
was a complete block, and even sedate politicians began to 
contemplate the expediency of the substitution of the Crown 
Prince for the King, when suddenly an act of sublime folly 
changed the face of affairs. Two madmen in politics honest, 
stubborn, ever-blundering Auguste Blanqui, and hot-headed 
Armand Barbes took it into their confounded noddles to have a 
Brummagem rising of their own, upon the very smallest scale 
and in the very worst fashion ever yet attempted anywhere in 
the world not even excluding the Frankfort folly of 1833 which 
would have been contemptible even in a community of the size of 
San Marino. I knew both gentlemen for gentlemen they were, 
ay, every inch of them, and thoroughly honest and well-meaning, 
and with a world of sympathy in their noble hearts for the lowly 
and oppressed. Blanqui I had first met in 1830. The acquaintance 
of Barbes I made only years after. 

Barbes was a handsome fellow, a French Creole, of Pointe-a- 



136 REMINISCENCES OF 

Pitre, in Guadaloupe. He was wealthy, and had a most charming 
sister. Both Blanqui and Barbes wer utterly unpractical and 
impracticable men. I had learnt a little wisdom in my career. 
I was no longer the insensate enthusiast of 1833, who could 
meditate the overthrow of a confederation of powerful rulers by a 
few score students and a few thousand peasants. 

I esteemed the two men, nay, I loved them, but I distrusted 
their judgment, and I smiled at their exaltation ; they, on their 
part, liked not what they were pleased to call my cynical ways. 
So they gave me little or none of their confidence, and I had not 
even seen either of them for months, when they insanely raised 
the cry of " Yive la Bepublique! " on the 12th of May, 1839, trying 
their 'prentice hand at a republican rising, which of course ended 
in overwhelming defeat and calamitous failure. 

The immediate effect of this act of worse than madness was 
the termination of the crisis, and the formation of the Soult- 
Duchatel Ministry. Louis Philippe found himself firmly reseated 
on his throne, and was thus permitted for nine years more to 
prepare the upheaving of 1848, so disastrous to France in its 
deplorable results and consequences. 

Barbes and Blanqui were tried by the Peers, and sentenced to 
death. At the intercession of the Duke of Orleans that sentence 
was commuted to imprisonment for life. How both regained 
their freedom in 1848, and how they used it to destroy the young 
Eepublic by the insensate attempts of the 17th March, 16th April, 
and notably 15th May, is matter of history. 

I was in Paris two years ago when Auguste Blanqui died, still 
conspiring, at the age of seventy-six poor, honest, impracticable, 
with his heart to its last beat pulsating with intensest com- 
passionate love for the suffering proletarians. He had in the end 
grown so secret in his movements that he would not even let his 
intimates know his private address, and his death was accelerated 
at least by an exhaustive night-walk on his return from a meeting, 
as he obstinately refused to get into a vehicle. 

Armand Barbes was sentenced to deportation after the 15th 
of May. He was imprisoned in Belle-Isle-sur-Mer. Besides 
being a revolutionary agitator by temperament, he was one of the 
rankest Chauvinists I ever knew. In 1854 he wrote a letter anent 
the Crimean struggle, in which he ardently prayed for success in 
the war against Kussia, even though the Second Empire should 
thereby be consolidated in France. Upon this Louis Napoleon 
set him free. He died in the year of the overthrow of the Second 
Empire. 

I have already stated that I had not the remotest connection 
with this absurd playing at revolution by Blanqui and Barbes. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 137 

Yet the affair affected mo personally in an injurious and uncom- 
fortable way. 

I was living at the time in the Rue Richelieu. I was working 
for Dr. Jourdain, the editor of a great number of French versions 
of German books, notably on homoeopathy. 

I had been hard at work a fortnight upon a portion of Rau's 
" Organon," I think. 

The doctor was a kind of literary contractor for Bailliere. I 
worked for him for years. 

After a fortnight's close application, I sorely felt the need 
of air and exercise. So, on this identical Sunday, the 12th of 
May, I left my lodging early in the morning for a long country 
ramble, from which I returned late in the evening, thoroughly 
tired with walking. I had not the least cause to suspect that 
anything had occurred that day out of the common run of 
events. 

When I reached my home, in joyful anticipation of a good 
night's rest, I found the police in possession. They had ransacked 
my effects, and seized my papers. 

This I had no need to mind much, as I have through life made 
it a point to burn papers that might compromise me or others. 
In fact, I may say that I have a tendency to destroy letters and 
papers in general, which I find now is just as foolish an extreme 
as the indiscriminate keeping of all correspondence can possibly 
be, for I am thrown solely and entirely upon my recollections for 
these reminiscences of mine. 

I was whisked off unceremoniously to the Rue de Jerusalem, 
where they kept me in close confinement for three days, when, 
finding no just or sufficient cause against me, the noble Louis 
Philippean authorities declared that I was a crafty and dangerous 
revolutionary, an alien who was ungratefully abusing the generous 
hospitality extended to me, and sternly bade me to " get out of 
that," meaning France, where I was doing pretty well at the 
time. 

The mens conscia recti may be an excellent theoretical consola- 
tion ; but I must say it does not answer in the hard practice of 
life. I felt awfully cut up. I had done no inj ury to any, either 
in act or intention. Yet I was driven from France. 

I lived to see Louis Philippe an exile in England. 

I elected to take my way over Rouen and Havre, as it was the 
longest, and therefore the most convenient, route for me and my 
settled purpose to disobey the order of expulsion. 

I had by this time found out that, with some pluck and a little 



138 REMINISCENCES OF 

savoir faire, and a dash of brass, it is not so very difficult a feat 
to defy and defeat the authorities of a great country. I coolly 
stopped at Eouen, where some excellent friends of mine, notably 
Doctors Gros and Delzeuges, and Pastor Paulmier, of the 
Protestant Church, obtained for me the position of Professor of 
History and English, at the institution of the Pare des Chartreux, 
then conducted by M. de Virmontois. 

Here I held on for eight months, when an accidental distant 
meeting in the street with a " Jerusalemite " from Paris, whose 
eye I caught "upon me" as Haynes Bailey has it a kind of 
Javert, who prided himself upon his vigilance and energy of 
action made it so unsafe for me to stay where I was, that I left 
rather suddenly, making tracks for Havre on my way to England. 

Et lien m'en prit, for my friends informed me afterwards 
that the E/ouen police had been communicated with at once, and 
that I should certainly have got into trouble had I not taken time 
by the forelock. 

Some thirty months after, thinking, not unreasonably, that 
the recollection of the May affair had faded away, I boldly ven- 
tured upon a long visit to Paris, where I arrived on the 14th of 
July, the day after the fatal accident to the ill-fated Duke of 
Orleans. It is not mere idle profession when I say that I felt 
deeply shocked and sincerely grieved. Since his first great kind- 
ness to me I verily believe I could hardly have brought myself to 
join in any hostile manifestations or intrigues against the dynasty 
of which he was the chief prop and brightest ornament. It was 
this very consciousness which made it so galling for me to be 
driven out. Now I thought of our last meeting in the Charite, 
and again upon how, only seven brief years before, I had first seen 
him in the prime of earliest manhood, with every auspicious star 
apparently shining brightly upon him ; and when I recalled the 
indulgent smile of sympathy with which he had asked me to state 
my case unreservedly to him, and mentally compared then and 
now, when he lay a shattered corpse, I confess I wept bitterly. 

To return. When the kind intercession of the Duke of 
Orleans came thus most opportunely to my aid, I was, as I have 
already stated, rapidly progressing on the road to convalescence. 
I seriously reflected on my position and prospects. I clearly 
foresaw that I must not hope to be readmitted to the army 
medical service for eighteen months or perhaps two years to 
come ; and I resolved accordingly to turn the little knowledge 
which I possessed to the best account meanwhile, not neglecting 
my hospital attendance whenever a favourable opportunity might 
offer. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 139 

I have a certain springiness in my composition which I verily 
believe nothing will ever lastingly tame a buoyancy of temper 
and disposition which nothing can long subdue. 

I took kindly to literary and journalistic work, and to public 
lecturing. Yes, Heaven forgive me, I went wandering about 
France like a travelling tinker with my "intellectual" wares, 
lecturing, I am ashamed to confess, upon a variety of subjects of 
which I knew about as much as Jean Jacques Rousseau did of 
music when he first took to giving lessons in it. But what of 
that? What I lacked in knowledge at the time I amply made up 
in self-reliance, vulgo cheek, which truly is a blessed gift, so long 
as it is adequately supported by blissful ignorance. It is truly 
surprising with what ease and freedom people will speak or write 
upon almost any given matter of which they know nothing, or 
next to nothing. 

With a little knowledge comes a deal of diffidence. I do not 
deliver lectures now, not even upon cookery and education, which 
are hobbies of mine. I only wish I could find my pristine cheek 
again. I used to make rather a good thing of lecturing in those 
days ; whilst now, when a little chance income from that source 

would be such a blessing to me Never mind; there is 

Nature's most beneficent law of compensation to fall back upon. 
If my present store is limited, I have but few teeth left. 

For the matter of that, only two wretched stumps worn-out 
old servants, to whom I continue to give the asylum of my 
mouth for auld lang syne. I have suffered fearfully from tooth- 
ache in my life. At first I had recourse to extraction; bat 
after losing nine teeth in this fashion, I resolved to bear the pain 
manfully, and keep my ivories. Had I gone on with extraction, 
I should not have had a tooth left at thirty, whilst by clinging 
to my cutters and grinders I managed pretty well up to some 
four years back, when I found myself reduced at last to three 
stumps, and even the alveoli began to basely take French leave 
of me. 

Well, well! I have no reason to complain. Has not my 
excellent friend Kichardson kindly supplied me with a complete 
and perfect set of splendid teeth, which I am, even at this present 
time, ardently striving to get used to! They fit excellently 
well, and are, in my opinion, the closest imitation of Nature 
ever yet achieved in the dental line. They are perfect for 
articulation, and, should the dea dira durcs necessitatis ever 
again drive me to the lecture hall, they will enable me at least to 
enunciate distinctly and intelligibly. I have tested their masti- 
cating capacity, and they have stood the test given to the extent 
of a small piece of almond rock, a delicacy to which I was much 



140 REMINISCENCES OF 

addicted at an earlier period of my life, and which I continue to 
affect even to the present day. I have put myself now into a 
systematic course of training for the wear and tear of my 
Eichardsonian ivories, and I trust in the course of a few months 
more to give that most excellent friend and dentist the pleasure 
of dining with him, to our mutual satisfaction. 

In the fall of 1835 I found myself for the third time in Lyons 
dear Lyons ! I had been there first in 1832,. and had passed 
through it again in summer, 1833, on my way to Toulon. 

When I came back to the great Ehone-and-Saone city in 1835, 
the traces of another formidable rising that of April, 1834, in 
which Eepublicans and silkworkers fought side by side for five 
days against the combined strength of the Government and the 
Municipality had nearly disappeared, all but the line of eighteen 
detached forts erected on the left Ehone and right Saone bank, 
to overawe the turbulent population of stout old Lugdunum 
Celtarum, that has so often defied the powers seated in Paris. 

When I was in Lyons, the remembrance had not died out yet 
of the fearful days of 1793, when the Lyonnese had risen against 
the Convention, and made short work of their Jacobin Municipality. 
The Convention that truly Titanic body which had so greatly 
dared to fling the severed head of the King as a gage of defiance 
in the face of coalesced monarchical Europe, and was then com- 
bating victoriously abroad and at home sent one of its improvised 
armies against the revolted city, which offered a stubborn resist- 
ance, but was captured in little more than two months. Old 
Madame Paillot, a lady of singular intelligence, whose acquaintance 
I chanced to make in 1838, told me appalling tales of the horrors 
that had succeeded the capture. She told me how thousands had 
been slaughtered among them the nearest and dearest to her ; 
and how she herself had only escaped as by a miracle. She 
described the Commissioners of the Convention, Couthon and 
Collot d'Herbois, as raving and raging maniacs ; Fouche, as a 
fish-blooded incarnation of Satan. When she spoke of the horrors 
of that time, and of the men who had wrought them, she rose 
erect, and, with the air of a Pythoness, fiercely denounced their 
ever infamous memory, and frenziedly devoted their immortal 
part to the everlasting torments of hell. I have heard Eachel, in 
her finest moments, heaping imprecations upon Eome, and I have 
been awed by the concentrated boundless passion of her 

Voir le dernier Eomain a son dernier soupir, 
Moi seule en etre la cause, efc mourir de plaisir ! 

Yet even she might have drawn a still deeper intensity of execra- 
tion and exultation from the fierce flaming ire of this old lady's 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 141 

outbursts. Madame Paillot told me, with a strange mixture of 
burning indignation and ineffable contempt, how the three 
Satanic emissaries, not satiated with the precious blood of 
thousands of butchered men and women, had, in their petty 
anger, taken to assailing stones and bricks, and timber, and 
Gallic mortar and Eoman cement, decreeing the demolition of the 
most venerable mementoes of the glorious past ancient edifices, 
princely residences, and fine mansions all through the doomed 
city ; how she had seen that vile actor " acteur a fairo pitie, 
Monsieur; je vous donne ma parole, et que j'ai, siffle moi- 
meme, moi que vous parle " lame Couthon, carried about in a 
sedan-chair from condemned building to condemned building, to 
devote them to demolition one by one, with a blow of a hammer 
which he held in his hand.* 

Yes, the Lyonnese had hissed Couthon, and this was the 
disgraced actor's way of avenging himself upon them ; and the 
mean scoundrel did it in what he probably considered dramatic 
fashion. 

This was the way of the Convention to deal with revolted 
cities. The Government of July proceeded very differently. Far 
from indulging in such wanton destruction, the powers in Paris 
endowed conquered Lyons with eighteen substantial forts all 
along the left bank of the Ehone and the right bank of the Saone. 
And, as it turned out in the long run, both Convention and King 
equally to the same little purpose. 

It was in 1838 that I knew Madame Paillot first. I lived then 
for a time in the Cours d'Herbouville, on the right bank of the 
Rhone. She was ray landlord's mother. 

I have, unhappily, cause to remember the Cours d'Herbouville. 
A fire, which broke out one fine evening in the house where I 

* Relata refero. This waa what old Madame Paillot told me, who 
professed to have been an eye-witness of the fearful events of the 
Girondino-Royalist insurrection and its subsequent suppression by 
Conthon and Doppet. History I am perfectly aware of it tells a 
slightly different tale in so far at least as refers to Couthon. The 
Convention had, indeed in a moment of fierce anger, decreed the 
destruction of Lyons ; but Couthon contented himself with the mildest 
and most purely theoretical execution of the terrible decree by striking 
with a silver hammer a single edifice on the Place Bellecour. This we have 
equally npon the authority of professed eye-witnesses, who place the 
fearful atrocities of the national vengeance wreaked upon the doomed 
city chiefly to Collot d'Herbois and Ponchos account. Well, Couthan 
had enough to answer for in all conscience without having the burthen 
of other men's crimes laid upon his shoulders. So we may readily give 
him the benefit of the doubt. 



142 REMINISCENCES OF 

lodged, burnt my personal effects, and consumed my papers an 
irreparable loss to me. I would willingly nay gladly have 
given five years of life to save and secure them ; I was in- 
demnified for my other losses, but that was very little conso- 
lation indeed to me. 

Madame Paillot was a superior woman, of surprising know- 
ledge and vast experience of life ; she was of strong conservative 
tendencies and opinions, with a decided leaning to Imperialism. 
Her son was an ultra-radical ; she would mercilessly chaff him on 
his affectation of Republicanism as she called it. In matters of 
faith she was altogether given to freethought. She had no trust 
whatever in medicine. At allopathy she sneered ; at homoeopathy 
she laughed; and she often made me wince by her uncom- 
promising caustic remarks upon the professors of either or both 
systems of murder by commission or omission, as she expressed 
it. She held vaccination in utter detestation. 

She had a little granddaughter, a charming cherub of four, 
with whom I used to romp, and to whom I was warmly attached. 
Judge of my horror when I was told one day that Madame Mere 
for she affected the Imperial style in her household had taken 
the poor child to the hospital for the express and explicit purpose 
that she should catch the small-pox from a young girl there who 
had the disease in a mild form. When the good lady returned 
with my pet, I indignantly remonstrated with her upon the 
monstrous enormity she had, in my opinion, been guilty of. She 
listened quietly until I had done with my objurgation ; then she 
told me, without the least shade of anger, that she freely forgave 
me the impertinence of my uncalled-for interference for the sake 
of the affection I bore the child; but she would thank me if I 
would kindly abstain from intruding my opinion and advice in a 
matter of which I could not by any possibility know and under- 
stand one tithe as much as she did. She bade me look at her 
sons and daughters, who had all of them had the small-pox, 
and who were handsome and healthy accordingly. She took the 
exanthematic diseases, especially small-pox, to be Nature's great 
prophylacticum. She had had small-pox in her childhood, and 
she had never since felt even a finger-ache. Only it was indis- 
pensable that the disease should be taken between the ages of 
four and seven, if possible, but at any rate before the period of 
puberty, and that the child should be in good health at the 
time. 

I was shut up, of course. Soon after the child was laid up 
with small-pox. No physician was called in : Madame Mere took 
the case into her own hands. She, the mother, and one of the 
aunts of the child, watched the little patient unremittingly with 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 143 

the tenderest care. When the pustules drew to a head, these 
three woman were unceasingly engaged in opening each pustule 
with a sharp-pointed gold pin, and squeezing it gently with a 
cotton pellet. Charaomile tea and elder-flower tea constituted 
the whole and sole medication. An ample supply of pure fresh 
air was kept up in the sick room. The usual mode of living was 
not changed. Everything was done to amuse the little patient 
whilst awake, and she was carefully watched when asleep. When 
the itching threatened to become intolerable, relief was afforded 
by tepid water compresses. The child recovered speedily and 
thoroughly, and six months after there were but few marks or 
traces left of the attack, and it was easy to see that these also 
would disappear in a few years. 

It was a lesson to me and a wrinkle. It is many years now 
that I have ceased to swear by Jenner, as my great master Heim 
had taught me in my University days Heim who had been the 
first to introduce vaccination in Berlin. 

To return to 1835. I took up my quarters at my old place, in 
the Eue St. Dominique, near the Place Bellecour, at the house of 
a M. Peyrade, whose acquaintance I had made on the occasion of 
my first visit to Lyons, in 1832. Godefroi Cavaignac had pro- 
cured for me from a friend a letter of introduction to Peyrade, 
who had received me kindly, giving me a tip-top apartment in 
his house a garret, not to put too fine a point upon it measuring 
twelve feet by twelve feet and eight feet. 

Dans un grenier qu'on est lien d vingt ans I and at thirty and 
forty, for the matter of that. How little one minds the number 
of steps that lead to the lofty roost, so long as one can take them 
three or four at a leap ! As one advances in years, the joints are 
apt to grow less supple, until, in life's fall, one finds the climb 
not quite so genial as one was wont to do in its spring. 

Peyrade was a character. He was an accomplished gourmet. 
There was barely a vintage known that his wonderful nose and 
palate would ever fail to detect. But he was more than a simple 
gourmet ; he was absolutely a "creator" of vintages, known and 
unknown. The vulgar process of blending had, in his skilful 
hands, gradually developed into the dignity of a fine art ; whilst 
his inventive genius, powerfully aided by a most intimate theo- 
retical and practical knowledge of every branch of the subject, 
had effectively devised a sound scientific basis for the many 
complex and intricata operations and the delicate manipulations 
necessary to the successful cultivation of this very special branch 
of flattering Nature. Is not imitation the sincerest form of 
flattery ? 



144 REMINISCENCES OF 

I know something of the great Hamburg vineyard, in which 
so many sorts of wine are made to grow that are innocent of the 
remotest connection with the juice of the grape. I have been at 
Cette and at Bercy c'est tout dire. It has been my good or my 
bad fortune, take it as you will, to watch the fabrication of " fiz," 
in certain parts of the Palatinate, and I have been specially privi- 
leged to see the most gripeful of all gripy wines that I have ever 
attempted to drink, the famous Silesian Griineberger, turned 
indifferently into Due de Montebello or Heidsick Monopole, or 
anyone's Carte Blanche or Carte Noire. But never and nowhere 
have I met M. Peyrade's match. I truly believe there was not a 
vintage that he could not " produce ; " and his success in ripening 
and aging young wines was simply marvellous. His immutable 
principle and herein lay perhaps the secret of his success was 
to confine himself rigorously to the scientific blending of natural 
vintages, without addition of spirit or any other foreign ingre- 
dient, except small quantities of certain aromatic essences, in the 
preparation and use of which he was a perfect adept. 

He somehow took a fancy to me, and we soon became intimate. 
I had a smattering of wine-lore, and knew something of chemistry, 
which, enabled me to give him advice occasionally in doubtful 
cases. He was pleased to admit me to the freedom of his cellars, 
and to let me into some of his secrets. He would even take me 
on a trip to Burgundy, where he used to buy grape-crops on the 
vine, to have them cut, etc., under his personal direction. 

To give an instance of his marvellous skill in the "produc- 
tion" of famous vintages from inferior growths. He bought on 
one occasion a grape-crop grown between Beaune and Nuits, 
which in due course of time grew in his skilful hands into 
Romance Conti ! Ay, and he sold it too, at a stiffish price, to 
real connoisseurs of the article ! Had I not been cognisant of 
the matter, I also would have sworn it was genuine Romance 
Conti. 

When I knew Peyrade first, in 1832, he was a man about fifty, 
with a pleasing frank countenance, and a merry twinkle in his 
dark eyes. He was by birth a Massilian or Marseillais, with a 
plentiful drop of Greek blood in his veins, which might account 
for the "Greek" element in his moral composition. He was 
a well-bred, well-educated man, a Bachelor of Arts and Sciences 
in fact, and endowed with great natural gifts in many ways 
among others, with no 'mean histrionic ability. He was cheerful 
and jovial, and, although he had a keen eye to business, and would 
always take care of his own interest, his natural disposition was 
generous and liberal. 

He was ancien 'regime all over, and had no love for the events 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 145 

of 1789 and 1792, and their outcome, although he made no display 
of his opinions and feelings, and was always intent upon keeping 
on good terms with people of all parties. 

It was to his kindness that I was indebted for an introduction 
to M. Vautrinier, through whose influence I obtained pretty 
remunerative employment on the Censeur de Lyon, then the chief 
Liberal paper of the Rhone Department. At a later period he 
introduced me to Douiller (or Doullier), a leading Dijon pub- 
lisher, for whom I translated several homoeopathic books into 
French. 

Douiller subsequently recommended me to Dr. L. de L., an 
allo-homceopathic physician, of Dijon, for whom I translated 
Hartmann's " Homoeopathic Therapeutics." With this gentleman 
I became rather intimately acquainted. He was an excellent 
physician. He, to my certain knowledge, disdainfully ignored 
Hahnemann's infinitesimal craze ; and would occasionally give 
even energetic agents in allopathic doses, though he kept care- 
fully dark about this heresy of his, fearing lest he should run 
counter to the convictions of his homoeopathic clients, who, just 
at that time, placed blind faith in the German prophet of the new 
medicinal creed, and in the Italo-French Elisha, whom the great 
master had found ploughing the allopathic fields, and upon whom 
he had cast his mantle Dr. Des Guidi, of Lyons. 

Once upon a time, a certain Dr. S., a German, believed he had 
found an infallible cure for stammering, which he was, of course, 
ardently desirous of promulgating at home and abroad, for the 
benefit of those afflicted with this distressing defect. Being no 
linguist, he deemed it expedient to engage, for his projected visit 
to England and France, a companion fully qualified to act as his 
general interpreter and mouthpiece in these countries. I know 
there must be many still alive in London who remember Dr. S.'s 
professed cure for stammering which, if I recollect aright, 
consisted simply in a strictly enforced system of slow syllabic 
enunciation. I have reason to know that Mr. Thomas Wakley, 
Coroner for Middlesex, was an enthusiastic apostle of the system, 
and I verily believe he had lists of stammerers made out in the 
several parishes of his province, simply that he might have them 
summoned on inquest juries, to try the efficacy of the cure upon 
them. 

Well, in the course of their professional tour, the two 
Germans came to Dijo'n, where Dr. S. was taken ill. Dr. L. was 
called in to attend him, but his ministrations were of no avail. 
Dr. S. died. 

Now there were some suspicious circumstances in the case, 

L 



146 REMINISCENCES OF 

which led to a judicial inquiry by the French authorities. The 
deceased's travelling companion was arrested on suspicion of 
having poisoned his friend with copper, as chemical analysis 
detected the presence of that metal in the dead man's stomach 
and intestines. 

It would appear that there had been for some time a want 
of harmonious feeling between the two travelling companions. 
Most likely Dr. S. had presumed a little overmuch upon his 
position as chief, which Dr. E. had resented, as was clearly 
apparent from certain passages in a private letter sent by E. to a 
friend in Germany, which was produced in Court to testify 
against him. There was one particular passage in this letter 
laid hold of by the prosecution. It was to the effect that S. 
fancied he could ride rough-shod over him, but that he would put 
a spoke in his wheel. "Ich werde ihm aber die Briihe versalzen," 
were the words in German ; literally they mean, " I'll oversalt 
his broth," an .expression which is very often used, and which 
figuratively means, " I'll spoil his game," or " I'll put a spoke in 
his wheel," but which, by a stretch, may be interpreted in a 
much less innocent sense. The official translator stretched even 
the stretch, and deposed that the hidden meaning of the passage 
was, " I'll poison his broth for him," " I'll do for him." 

Copper having been found, it was taken for granted, of course, 
that E. must have made true his threat, and poisoned his poor 
friend with copper. The defence suggested that copper might 
have been medicinally administered, as was, indeed, admitted by 
Dr. L., only that he deposed he had given it in infinitesimal doses. 
How the matter might have ended it would be difficult to say, 
but on the evening of the second day of the trial (I think) the 
tide had considerably turned in favour of the accused, and an 
acquittal was anticipated, when the unhappy young man hanged 
himself in his cell. The true cause of this lamentable suicide was 
a heartless letter which the ill-starred E. had received that very 
night upon his return from the court, buoyed up with the hope 
of acquittal next day. 

The letter was from his betrothed, to whom he was most 
warmly and sincerely attached. It informed the poor fellow, in 
cold " business " style, that the lady, after long and anxious 
deliberation and consultation with her family and friends, had 
come to the unalterable decision to break off her engagement 
with him, even though he should be triumphantly acquitted, 
which, of course, she most devoutly wished and hoped he would 
be. Even the most absolute acquittal would have no power to 
alter her fixed resolve to have done with the u inauspicious " con- 
nection, for, said the lady copying, unwittingly, most likely, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 147 

Caesar anent his wife her future husband must never have been 
even suspected of such a fearful crime as that laid to his charge. 
She appealed to his manliness and to his love for her (!) to let 
this be the last communication between them. She entreated him 
not to break her tender, loving heart (!) by essaying to address 
her again in any way. Should he, however, cruelly disregard this 
most earnest appeal to his good feelings, her dear parents would 
know how to shield her from all obsession and importunity. 

It was a sweet letter for a " tender, loving-hearted " maiden 
even to copy and see forwarded to one in a desperately critical 
position. She surely might have awaited the event, before she 
put pen to paper to stab her ill-fated lover to the heart. Well, 
the letter did for him ; so you see it saved a world of trouble. 
Had the victim been a wiser man, he would most probably have, 
considered himself very fortunate in getting rid decently of his 
engagement to this singularly tender-hearted and most unsel- 
fishly loving young woman. Well, well ! love is a strange pas- 
sion, and men and women too are fearfully and wonderfully 
made. 

The analysis of the remains of the dead body of S. had 
revealed the presence of minute traces only of copper, such as 
might have resulted from an allopathic dose of the poison. Dr. L. 
affirmed he had only given homoeopathic globules. From what I 
had occasion to know of the practice of some allo-homoeopathic 
physicians, notably of Dr. L. himself, I felt more than half inclined 
to attribute the presence of the copper to an allopathic dose of 
the metal administered, perhaps, in this instance, by inad- 
vertence. I felt equally disposed to impute the cause of death 
simply to typhoid fever, as maintained, in fact, by the defence. 
It was a very sad affair, take it as you may. Even to this present 
hour I have never been able to divest my mind of a more than 
half -conviction that the ill-fated E. should not even have been 
put upon his trial for the offence imputed to him upon insufficient 
suspicion, which might surely have been explained and cleared 
up on more than one other at least equally admissible theory. 

However, the accused committed suicide. So there was an 
end of him and of the case. 

There would seem to be a curious affinity between love and 
suicide. Even from my own limited experience of life I might 
adduce several instances in support of this notion, more par- 
ticularly one which happened in the early part of the spring of 
1839, in Paris, and which I will give here, as it made a most sad 
and lasting impression upon me. 

I rented a small apartment in the Rue Richelieu, au quatrieme 

L 2 



148 REMINISCENCES OF 

au-dessus de I'entresol, tantamount to the fifth floor. Immediately 
underneath, on the fourth floor, lived a young law-student, with 
whom I soon became intimately acquainted. He was handsome, 
clever, and accomplished, and about twenty -three years old. He 
was what is called in France a fils de famille. His father owned 
a small estate, some twelve miles from Paris. We had barely 
known each other four days, when he made me the confidant of 
his joys, and griefs, and sorrows, and anxieties. 

Poor Jules I omit his patronymic, for obvious reasons had 
what is generally known as a passion malheureuse for a pretty 
girlj.in an advanced state of emancipation, who had very con- 
siderably crossed the narrow boundary between grisettism and 
lorettedom. This young lady, who could proudly boast of having 
several wealthy beaux to her string, after being Jules' bonne amie 
several months, suddenly found that, as she felt no real love for 
him, the connection was simply disgraceful. So she dropped the 
poor fils de famille, to take up instead with a pere de famille, a 
peer of the realm, who could afford to raise her to the position of 
a dame d voiture a quatre chevaux. This drove Jules well-nigh 
out of his mind. 

I had been introduced to the young lady just before this 
latest exchange of "lovers." She was wondrously pretty and 
attractive ; but, as it seemed to me at least, thoroughly heartless. 
Why, in the very presence of the man who would gladly have laid 
down his life for her (alas ! he actually did afterwards), she had 
the hardihood to invite me to a tete-a-tete supper sans fa$on, 
which made the poor young fellow thoroughly unhappy, even 
with all he knew of her. 

I had a shrewd suspicion that all this was done by the woman 
in pursuance of a fixed purpose and well-defined plan of hers to 
entangle Jules in a matrimonial engagement. She told me her- 
self that she was tired and ashamed of the life she was leading, 
and that she was sure she could take kindly to anyone who would 
woo her pour le Ion motif, and make a proper marriage settlement 
upon her. 

Now Jules was so absolutely and blindly infatuated, that, to 
call her all his own, he would certainly have married her, had the 
French law only permitted it. But in France no marriage is 
recognised as legal and binding which has not the express 
consent of the parents or their lawful representatives. This rule 
is rigorously applied till the age of twenty-five, after which 
the party desirous to contract marriage may, if opposed still by 
hiB or her parents, serve upon the objectors three sommations 
respectueuses, declaring his or her fixed purpose to contract the 
union objected to. 



[AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 149 

Jules was only twenty- three, as Mile. Madeleine knew per- 
fectly well ; she knew also that he was solely dependent on his 
parents, and that a marriage settlement was altogether out of the 
question without their consent. But she knew that his parents 
were passionately fond of their son, and she hoped that he might 
succeed in persuading them to consent to the marriage with her, 
if he would only be sufficiently earnest and urgent in his suppli- 
cations; and to stimulate him to the utmost exertion in this 
direction, she essayed by every means to inflame his passion and 
excite his jealousy. 

All these elements of the drama I learnt from Jules, as much 
as from Mdlle. Madeleine herself. 

I tried the power of reasoning upon my friend. I essayed to 
open his eyes to the truly sordid nature of her whom he wor- 
shipped. It was all in vain. He even quarrelled with me for 
daring to speak ill of his divinity. Still, as he could not do 
without a confidant, his ill-humour lasted only a day, after which 
he came back to me, to tell me his latest and bitterest grief. He 
had had an explanation with his parents. They, and his two 
sisters, most charming girls, to whom he had introduced me, had 
categorically declared to him that on no consideration whatever 
would the family ever consent to the disgrace of an alliance with 
a woman of Madeleine's stamp. His father had even threatened 
him with his parental curse, and that he would cast him off if he 
persisted in his insane attachment. He had also had an explana- 
tion with Madeleine. He had offered her a secret marriage the 
ceremony to be performed in England and that he would marry 
her once more in France after his legal emancipation. He would 
meanwhile secure to her four thousand francs a year out of the 
ample income allowed him by his father. It was no use what- 
ever ; the young woman simply laughed in his face. She impu- 
dently told him that her present admirer thought little of making 
her an allowance more than six times that which he (Jules) so 
generously offered to her. 

The poor fellow was driven to the verge of madness between 
the two. I made another endeavour to bring him to a more 
sensible view of the position. The more I argued, the more he 
raved. Nothing would do to calm him. He swore to me at last 
that, as his parents had declared that they'd rather see him dead 
in his coffin than bring this indelible disgrace upon their ancient 
honourable family, he would take care they should see him dead 
in his coffin and pretty soon, too. I took this threat for the 
mere idle ravings of a half-lunatic. 

This was about the middle of April, in the morning. When I 
came home in the afternoon, as usual, I knocked at Jules' door on 



150 REMINISCENCES OF 

my way to my own apartment, as was my wont. He was rarely 
out at this time. Receiving no reply, I turned the handle of the 
outer door, which opened freely. In trying to open the inner 
door leading to his sitting-room, I found that the opening was 
resisted by some heavy weight on the inner side. By a desperate 
effort, inspired by a dread foreboding, I succeeded at last in 
forcing the door back and my way into the room ; and there, to 
my intensest horror and grief, I beheld the dead body of my 
unhappy young friend, suspended from a hook fixed in the wall 
close to the ceiling. 

My first impulse was to alarm the house ; I thought better of 
it. With my dagger-knife I cut the body down, and placed it on 
the couch. I undid the rope and anxiously essayed whether life 
might still be lingering. Alas ! it speedily was but too plain and 
clear to me that the body had been dead at least an hour. 

My next most anxious thought was what had best be done to 
spare the unhappy family as much horror and suffering as might 
be possible under the circumstances. 

I knew the commissaire du quartier not very intimately, 
indeed, still sufficiently to have reason to think him a kind- 
hearted and sensible man. I went to see him, and he at once 
returned with me. At first the red-tape routine of his office 
made him upbraid me almost harshly for having dared to take 
upon myself to act without first communicating with the autho- 
rities, and awaiting their arrival. I replied that I had hoped my 
poor friend might still have life in him, and that I wished to 
spare the bereaved family the additional horror of publicity. 
Then the official made his exit and the man came in, and a true 
man he turned out to be. He took the entire conduct of the 
matter into his own hands, and looked to every detail himself. 
Through his action and influence the cause of death was officially 
and medically declared to have been serous apoplexy.* 

* The ancient Saxon institution of coroner's inquest is practically 
unknown on the Continent at least in the English sense of the term. 

I remember not the 5th but the 9th of November, 1851, when I 
attended a great meeting of German exiles, held at the Freemasons' 
Tavern, in memory of Robert Blum, done to death three years before, 
at Vienna, by Prince Windischgratz. It was a public meeting. Dr. 
Arnold Huge, one of my oldest and dearest friends, was in the chair. 
Dr. Tausenau had just delivered a brilliant English oration, and the 
meeting was beginning to promise being a great success, when suddenly 
Captain Atcherley (I think I am correct in the name), an eccentric 
gentleman, who used to go about in those days striving to ventilate, in 
and out of season, a certain lamp-of-life and various other crazes, 
pounced upon the meeting with an address upon the ancient institution 
of coroner's inquest, which, he maintained at disastrous length, had it 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 151 

I will not attempt to describe the harrowing scene when the 
bereaved father stood by the side of the corpse of what but a brief 
space of time before had been his living son so full of .promise 

then, and now And the stricken old man was raving and 

raging against himself for his rash and impious threatened im- 
precation upon his unhappy boy. He had wished him dead 
in his coffin rather than wed with a courtesan. Now he was 
lying dead before him, and he called frantically upon his Jules, 
his love and pride, to come back to life, and he should have his 
way. 

I thought it incumbent upon me to acquaint the true cause of 
all this misery with the awful catastrophe. The callous wretch 
showed very little emotion indeed ; nay which may seem barely 
credible she actually congratulated herself upon her lucky escape 
from a lunatic, who might perhaps have killed her in a fit of 
jealousy. " II s'est pendu, Monsieur eh lien! tant pis pour lui, 
tant mieux pour moi ! " 

Ay, a thousand times preferable to see the young life extinct 
to see the body dead in the coffin than that he should have 
made this woman his wife. This I said to the bereaved father 
when I told him of my interview with this Magdalen of the Paris 
gutter ; and the old man was comforted. 

existed iii Austria, must Have saved Blum's life, or at least avenged his 
death upon his murderer. It was a sad thing for the committee, who 
had contracted with the establishment for the supply of one hundred 
suppers, I believe, at five shillings a head. As the captain would not 
respond to the chairman's passionate entreaties to " shut up," and as it 
was not thought expedient to expel a free-born Briton vi et armis from 
a professedly public meeting, the lecturer triumphantly held his own ; 
but the audience gradually melted away, and at least fifty expected 
partakers of the supper ordered and paid for by the committee did not 
come back, so that the unlucky members had to pay some twelve to 
fifteen pounds out of their pockets for the maniac captain's whistle. 
However annoyed by this madman's interruption of the proceedings, we 
were all of us present most willing to admit that a coroner's inquest is a 
great institution ; and I, for one, thought that it would be practically 
impossible for a death not clearly due to natural causes to happen in 
England without a coroner's inquest being held. 

I thought so up to within the last few months. In one of the fierce 
autumn gales the year before last a boat approached the Kentish coast, 
with two unhappy men in it, shouting louder than the fierce blast for 
help in their extremity. The shouts were heard, and the look-out of 
the coastguard was eagerly appealed to. In the plenitude of his imagi- 
nary wisdom and pretended extensive experience, this individual pooh, 
poohed the appeal. "He thought it was all imagination; so the two 
shipwrecked men were quietly let drown. No coroner's inquest was 
held. Why not ? Simply, perhaps, that it was feared a verdict might 
be found censuring the coastguard. 



152 REMIMSCENCES OF 

Many years after, in 1850, 1 was in Paris with George Augustus 
Sala. We took rooms in the Hotel d'Espagne, Eue St. Jacques. 
Just as we were entering the portals of the hotel, a coffin was 
carried out, pauper fashion, attended by a sergent de ville, as 
solitary (official) mourner. On inquiry of the servant, that 
damsel told us, in the most unconcerned manner, that it was the 
funeral of a Pole who had killed himself with charcoal fumes. 
"II s'est asphyxie " (astfissie, she called it), " Messieurs; eh lien! 
tant pis pour lui" This was the poor Pole's funeral oration. 
Sala was disgusted and angry with this callous heartlessness. 
So was I. 

Later on Madame Bresson, the proprietress of the hotel, told 
me that deceased was a Polish officer, who owed her two months' 
rent, and had behaved very indelicately to her, and most un- 
gratefully. "For," the good woman said, " not satisfied with 
swindling me of the rent due, he must, forsooth, bring discredit 
upon the place by committing suicide in his room, instead of 
drowning himself in the river, as a person of proper sense and 
feeling would have done. Mais ca n'a pas de coeur, ces Polonais, 
voyez-vous, Monsieur ; c'est un tas de vauriens." 

Poisoning cases have always had a powerful attraction for me. 
In the Lafarge case I took a special interest, because my revered 
master Raspail was connected with the scientific part of it. Marie 
Cappelle was married in the French fashion which means with- 
out having her heart or affections consulted in the matter to an 
ironmaster in Correze, a M. Lafarge, a man antipathetic to her in 
every way, and who on his part only cared for her dower, to 
repair his shattered fortune. The marriage took place in 1838. 
He brought his young wife home to his old seigneurial mansion, 
where everything was gloomy including a more than gloomy 
mother-in-law. In December, 1839, Lafarge went to Paris on 
business. His wife sent him a cake from Glandier a cake baked 
by her. I think it was intended for a New Year's gift. Lafarge 
fell ill. He returned to Glandier, where he died January 15, 
1840. 

The family, conscious, most likely, how much cause the widow 
had to dislike and detest every member of it, and more especially 
the dead man, who had made and had let others make his 
unhappy wife's life miserable, imputed the cause of death to 
poison administered by the wife in the cake she had sent her 
husband to Paris. 

Marie Cappelle Lafarge was arrested on suspicion. A post- 
mortem examination was made, with full chemical analysis. 

Four gentlemen, who fancied themselves physicians because 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 153 

they had acquired the right to write M.D. after their names, gave 
it as their deliberate opinion that deceased had been poisoned 
with arsenic, of which metal they professed to have found notable 
quantities. 

The friends of Marie Cappelle submitted the matter to Orfila, 
the great toxicologist, also one of my masters, who found that the 
four M.D.'d gentlemen (" des hommes qui se parent du titre do 
docteur," he expressed it) had made a mull of it, as, with their 
superficial and accordingly lamentably defective knowledge of 
chemistry, they had used antiquated and doubtful methods of 
detection, and had fancied they had found arsenic where there 
was none. 

This looked bright and cheering. But the prosecution now 
had recourse to a clever move : they placed the analysis in Orfila's 
own hands. 

Orfila was honest, and he was, perhaps, over-eager in his 
desire to prove himself honest. He made what he believed a 
most careful chemical investigation, which resulted in the dis- 
covery of a minute trace of arsenic in the remains of the late 
Lafarge. The doom of Marie Cappelle was sealed with this dis- 
covery, the more so as a female friend of her youth came forward 
to fasten a robbery of diamonds upon her, which, of course, could 
tend only to strengthen the bias of the jury against the unhappy 
widow. 

But my revered master Easpail was coming to the rescue. He 
had taken the trouble to trace the zinc wire with which Orfila 
experimented to the shop where the great toxicologist had pro- 
cured the article, and he found that the said zinc was impure, 
containing arsenic enough to account for much more even than 
Orfila had detected by his analysis ! Orfila had used Marsh's test, 
which, if arsenic is present, terminates in the production of an 
arsenical mirror an infallible test, provided the sulphuric acid 
and the zinc used a& reagents in the process be perfectly free 
from arsenical admixture, which they only too frequently are 
not. 

Easpail, having placed his singularly extensive and profound 
knowledge of chemistry, and his discovery of arsenic in Orfila's 
reagent, at the service of the defence, was on his way to Tulle, 
where the assizes were being held, when an accident delayed his 
progress; and the unhappy Marie Cappelle was found guilty 
meanwhile, and sentenced to hard labour for life. 

Raspail arrived & day after the fair. Still he strove to 
save the condemned woman, and to redeem the wrong cruelly 
inflicted upon her by a mere mischance. I remember how 
hard he strove. He pointed out the admitted fact that 



154 REMINISCENCES OF 

arsenic has nob unfrequently been found in the human body 
without having been administered as a poison. He indignantly 
protested against the use of doubtful reagents in medico-legal 
analyses, and he caustically remarked that, with reagents such as 
Orfila had made use of in this .sad case, arsenic could easily be 
detected anywhere, even in the leg of a wooden chair. 

The "noble profession" at once laid hold of this. They 
triumphantly asked what reliance could be placed upon the state- 
ments of a chemist who professed he could find arsenic in wooden 
legs. It was revolting but, bless you, it was after all in human 
nature : the ignorant smatterer will assail and try to run down 
the profound scientist. 

Here, strange to relate perhaps, I have reason to believe that 
Orfila, who was a loyal gentleman, fairly admitted his error, and 
joined Easpail in a professional report to that effect. Now, one 
would think that, after this admission by the principal witness 
for the prosecution, the case would have been reconsidered. 
No, nothing of the kind. They have a Court of Cassation 
in France, to which an appeal lies in criminal cases; but 
alas ! the appeal lies only where certain formalities pre- 
. scribed by the law have not been duly observed. Thus, should 
it, for instance, turn out in a case of murder that the principal 
witness upon whose evidence the accused has been found guilty, 
has been totally mistaken, or that he has committed the grossest 
perjury, the party convicted and condemned upon that evidence 
may be guillotined for aught the Court of Cassation will or 
can do to save him ; whilst the least disregard of any 
little matter of form prescribed by the law will suffice to 
vitiate the proceedings, and send the case back before another 
tribunal. You see, they order these things, like everything else, 
of course, so much better in France than in other lands. So, in 
the Lafarge case, though the judges in Cassation were told that 
the poison supposed to have been found in deceased's body 
had really been in the zinc wire used by the chemical expert, 
it made no difference. There had been no default of form, and 
the verdict and sentence must therefore stand ; and poor Marie 
Cappelle had to pass five years of her wretched broken life in the 
Montpellier House of Detention or Correction, after which the 
Government graciously permitted her to suffer on in the convent 
of St. Re my. In 1852 they set the unhappy victim free at last. 
Had they only waited a few months longer, her death would have 
saved them the trouble and the inconvenience of a partial admis- 
sion of a judiciary mistake; for in France they are still more 
reluctant than even in England to admit that proverbially blind 
Dame Themis will occasionally fatally ^blunder. Look at the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 155 

most lamentable case of the Courrier de Lyon, where it took the 
family of the legally murdered man some sixty years, I believe, 
to force from the reluctant authorities even the paltry concession 
of the rehabilitation of his memory. 

Justice is but too often a mocking misnomer, and, like law, 
occasionally worse than a lottery a hazard, indeed, played with 
loaded dice on the side of Dame Themis. 

In the year 1845, John Tawell, a member of the Society of 
Friends, was charged with the wilful murder of his mistress, 
Sarah Hart, at Salt Hill, near Windsor, if I remember rightly. 

Tawell had been an apothecary at one time. In the earlier 
part of his life he had committed an offence which had led to his 
deportation beyond the seas. He had made some money in 
Australia, and had, in due course of time, returned to this country, 
where he got entangled in a fatal connection (as it turned out 
in the end) with the woman Hart, which weighed heavily upon 
him, more particularly after his marriage with the widow of a 
member of the Society of Friends a Mrs. Cuthbert, of Berk- 
hampstead. John Tawell had, after his first transgression, been 
excluded from the Society of Friends. After his return to this 
country he strove eagerly and perseveringly to obtain his read- 
mission; his marriage with Mrs. Cuthbert placed him in the 
position of a tolerated member on probation. 

Tawell was emphatically a weak man. Sarah Hart, who had 
two children by him, threatened him, it would appear, to reveal 
his connection with her to his wife, and to the Society. Nay, she 
did worse. I had evidence placed before me to show that she 
had obscurely instigated him to the murder of his wife. I 
never had any call or desire to examine into the question of 
John Tawell's guilt or innocence of the crime laid to his 
charge. What I was concerned about, was simply the glaring 
insufficiency and untrustworthiness of the medical and 
chemical evidence upon which the man was convicted and 
hanged. This insufficiency and untrustworthiness it would, in 
the opinion of many men qualified to judge, have been easy to 
demonstrate at the trial Indeed, the defence had present in court 
at least seven professional experts of the highest reputation and 
attainments, such as Professor Graham, later on Master of the 
Mint, and others of equal eminence. Why were these witnesses 
not called ? That is a most difficult question to answer. Tawell 
was defended by one of the most eminent of English barristers, 
subsequently a distinguished judge, who, in his discretion, 
declined calling these witnesses, electing instead to rely upon a 
pathetic speech, a few theatrical tears,awhite pocket-handkerchief, 



156 REMINISCENCES OF 

and an ingenious, though, unfortunately for his client, slightly 
untenable theory of the conversion of harmless apple-pips into a 
deadly poison a theory, mind, advanced before one of the acutest 
and most clear-headed and logical judges that ever graced 
the British bench the late Lord Wensleydale, then Baron Parke. 

I had, upon application to me, given an opinion on the chemical 
evidence adduced by the prosecution, an opinion which I was 
ready and prepared to defend and uphold in open court. How- 
ever, as I have just now stated, no professional evidence was 
called by counsel for the defence. 

After the trial and verdict, the defence resolved to make an 
appeal to the Home Secretary, then Sir James Graham, and I 
was asked to write a pamphlet embodying my views of the case, 
duly supported by fact and argument. I wished in this pamphlet 
to confine myself within the strictest professional limits, to avoid 
touching in any way or respect the question of the guilt or 
innocence of the condemned man, and to take my stand 
simply upon the just maxim that a conviction on a charge 
of murder should be arrived at only upon the very clearest 
evidence, and upon the self-evident proposition that, if people were 
to be convicted and hanged upon such insufficient and fallible 
evidence as in this Tawell case, no accused man's life and honour 
would be safe, no matter how innocent he might be. 

It was, however, pointed out to me that a purely platonic ex- 
pression of opinion, as contemplated by me, must naturally carry 
much less weight with it than if supported by an affirmation of 
my firm belief in Tawell's innocence of the crime of which he had 
been convicted. I argued that an expert should never act as an 
advocate ; but I was over-persuaded. It has but too often been 
thus with me : Meliora vidi, deteriora secutus sum. 

So I wrote my pamphlet accordingly. It would be unbecoming 
in me to dwell upon its contents here. But I may be permitted 
to say that there were in it asseverations of certain facts and cir- 
cumstances which ought to have been investigated. For instance, 
Baron Parke had in his summing up dwelt with considerable 
force upon the extremely minute dose of prussic acid the poison 
said to have been used by Tawell that suffices to kill the one- 
seventh of a minim or grain of the acid, the learned Baron in- 
formed the jury, taking his stand upon the notorious case of 
Magendie's eleven epileptic patients, who had all of them suc- 
cumbed to this very minute dose, as reported by Dr. Taylor, then 
and for years after a murderously high authority in medico-legal 
cases. 

Now, knowing something of prussic acid, and of the case 
of the epileptics, the assertion rather startled me. Upon re- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 157 

ference to Taylor's work, I found that he had simply made a 
barely excusable blunder in his English version of the fact as 
stated in French. The dispensing apothecary had given the 
unfortunate patients the acide cyanhydrique medicinal au sixieme, 
in lieu of Magendie's syrup, and so every one of the eleven victims 
had had administered to him ONE AND A THIRD GRAIN of pure 
anhydrous acid that is to say, more than nine times as much as 
Baron Parke, upon Taylor's authority, told the jury was a killing 
dose! 

I had reason to believe at the time that my pamphlet was laid 
before the Home Secretary, Sir James Graham, along with the 
concurrent opinion of Professor Graham and three other eminent 
chemists, and that there seemed to be a hope of a favourable con- 
sideration being given to the matter. However, the judge's opinion 
was adverse. Baron Parke, I was informed by a gentleman who 
took a deep interest in the case, and who had had a personal inter- 
view with him whilst admitting that there had been grave laches 
in the prosecution, and that the professional evidence might not 
have been absolutely faultless yet he, who had the whole case 
before him, with the strongly corroborative collateral evidence, 
had, after the most anxious consideration of all the circumstances, 
come to the conclusion that the verdict and sentence ought to 
stand. 

So the law was let take its course. 

I had occasion to go down to Berkhampstead on the eve almost 
of the fatal termination. I saw the unhappy man's sorrow- 
stricken family. It was a most harrowing experience to me. I 
had not unfrequently seen men about to die a violent death. 
Had I not had to attend military executions in Algiers ? But 
never yet had I beheld the agonising grief of an affectionate 
family about to lose by the dread process of the law a beloved 
member. And that John Tawell was dearly beloved by his 
family, and by his servants, and liked by his neighbours, I can 
conscientiously affirm from personal observation. 

After the execution the chaplain of the gaol stated that the 
condemned man had made to him a confession of his crime, 
which he, however, refused to produce, rather electing to 
lose his position as gaol-chaplain. Lord Nugent, one of the 
county magistrates, affirmed afterwards that the confession had 
been communicated to him, and he imparted it to the broken- 
hearted widow, and to the brother and sister of the dead man. 
This confession, I was given to understand, whilst admitting the 
killing of Sarah Hart, completely negatived the theory of the 
prosecution and the professional evidence given in support of it, 
as to the mode of the administration of the poison. 



158 REMINISCENCES OF 

After this unhappy affair, my friends were kind enough to 
bestow upon me the style and title of " the poisoners' advocate." 

Years after occurred the famous Palmer case. Before the trial 
came on, my friend, T. L. Holt, introduced a gentleman from 
Birmingham to me, the solicitor for the defence, who wished to 
engage my services, offering me a fair remuneration. However, 
in this particular instance, I had no doubt on my mind of the 
accused's guilt. So I declined, frankly explaining to the legal 
gentleman how, with my convictions all the other way, I knew 
that my advocacy of his case would be worse than useless to his 
client, which, I think, ought to be held to show how little I 
deserved the name of the poisoners' advocate. In this case also 
the chemical evidence was not free from blunders, which might, 
indeed, have led to a miscarriage of justice. 

Again, years after, there was another famous alleged poison- 
ing case, that of Miss Isabella Bankes, in which Thomas 
Smethurst, a surgeon, was put upon his trial for wilful murder, 
convicted and sentenced, and within an ace of being legally 
done to death on the gallows, upon evidence so obviously 
tainted with suspicion of blundering, gross carelessness, lament- 
able ignorance, and most unfair prejudice against the unfortunate 
accused, and so full of contradictions, that no considerate man 
would have consented to see even the lowest cur hanged upon it. 

In Tawell's case I had been moved simply and entirely by the 
defectiveness of the professional evidence brought forward against 
the accused. I could not bring my mind to believe in the state- 
ments and opinions of men who, with the revelations of the 
post-mortem before them, could go on testing for arsenic, opium, 
corrosive sublimate, and of all things in the world, sulphuric 
acid ! and who only tried for prussic acid upon the suggestion of 
the chemist who made the analysis under their direction and super- 
vision. But here in Smethurst's case, all my sympathies were 
roused, and my burning indignation, when I saw the unhappy 
man put in jeopardy of his life and fair fame by professional 
ignorance and conceit, by every conceivable wile and dodge of 
an unscrupulous prosecuting counsel, and alas, that it should 
have been so ! by the barely disguised adverse bias of the 
presiding judge. I make no hasty or inconsiderate charge here. 
I am ready to prove every word of this before any fair and 
competent tribunal. I say it deliberately and advisedly, had 
Smethurst been hanged, it would have been an indelible stain 
upon the administration of justice in this country. 

Happily, there were many others who felt with me that a 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 159 

judiciary crime was about to be committed, and who deemed it 
every true man's duty to strive might and main to save an 
innocent life. That mighty engine for good albeit, unhappily, 
occasionally also for evil the Press, with the Telegraph and the 
Star in the foremost rank, stood nobly forward in defence of right 
and justice, and many of the leading members of the medical 
profession voluntarily placed their opinions on record in refuta- 
tion of the medical and chemical evidence upon which the 
unfortunate accused had been convicted and sentenced. 

Several brilliant writers on the Telegraph and the Star held 
nightly consultations at the Lyceum Tavern, in the red room, 
which had at one time been temporarily used for the convivial 
meetings of the famed Beefsteak Club, but was then rented by 
the Savage Club, of which these journalists were prominent 
members. They were pleased to believe in me, and to take from 
me such information on points of science and practice as it was 
in my humble and imperfect power to give. 

I also ventured to take an independent step at this most 
critical juncture. Years before I had given lessons in German 
and French to many ladies and gentlemen, among others to the 
present Sir Gilbert Frankland Lewis. I had thus had occasion 
to become known to that most excellent gentleman's elder 
brother, then Mr. George Cornewall Lewis, who had more than 
once done me the honour of conversing with me upon history, 
statistics, and other subjects with which he was kind enough to 
think I was tolerably well acquainted. He was, at the time of 
Smethurst's case, Home Secretary. 

Well, I addressed a memorial to him upon the case, carefully 
reviewing every part of it from beginning to end, extenuating 
nothing, nor setting down aught in malice. 

I have reason to believe that the Home Secretary gave his 
very serious attention to the facts averred in this memorial, 
which was, along with other documents, transmitted to the illus- 
trious Sir Benjamin Brodie, who, after mature consideration , 
gave it as his decided opinion that the professional and scientific 
evidence was glaringly insufficient to support the conviction. 

The Home Secretary therefore granted Smethurst a free 
pardon for not having committed the crime imputed to him. 
I have reason to believe that an important personage suggested, 
nay, urged, a commutation of the sentence to the next highest 
punishment in the scale an act of monstrous injustice which Sir 
George indignantly declined to perpetrate. 

I never knew Smethurst; I never even saw the man either 
before or after the trial; and I certainly derived no personal 
benefit whatever from my exertions in the case : the very reverse. 



160 REMINISCENCES OF 

In Tawell's case a very highly-placed legal gentleman took 
me severely to task for " turning," as he was kindly pleased 
to express it, " the talents which it had pleased the Almighty 
to bestow upon me to the very worst account, by misusing 
them in the interest of murderers." The same gentleman, 
having chanced to hear of my connection with the Smethurst 
case, of which he unfortunately took a most prejudiced 
and absolutely wrong view, ungraciously declined, at a sub- 
sequent period, interesting himself in my behalf in a matter 
of great moment to me. Yet the proud consciousness of having 
contributed to the best of my small power and ability to save an 
innocent man's life was, and is to the present day, my sweetest 
reward. 

In the early part of July, 1864, this giant metropolis of 
ours was suddenly startled from the dull decorous routine of 
everyday life by the report of an atrocious murder committed 
on the North London Eailway. The dead body of a gentleman 
named Briggs was found on the line murdered somewhat in 
the same fashion as Mr. Gold was the year before last by Lefroy. 
Franz Miiller, a German journeyman tailor, who a few days after 
the murder had taken his departure for America, was suspected 
of the crime, brought back to England, tried, convicted, and 
executed. I followed the proceedings with some attention, with- 
out, however, taking the least personal interest in the matter, 
except, perhaps, in so far that I could not help remarking the 
almost universal bias of the public against the accused, and the 
somewhat glaring defects and mistakes of the defence. 

A few days after Miiller's condemnation I was on the point of 
starting for Paris, when, on the very eve of my departure, a 
deputation from the German Legal Protection Society, con- 
sisting of Dr. Juch, Baron Yon Erlanger, Mr. Osterroth, Dr. 
Bizonfy, Mr. Hegewald, and others, called upon me at the 
Gordon Hotel, Covent Garden, to request me to write a pam- 
phlet in defence of the condemned man, with a view to a 
revisal of the trial. I represented to the deputation, which 
took me completely by surprise, that I knew no more of 
the case than what I had read in the newspapers, and that 
I had not that absolute conviction of the condemned man's 
innocence which they seemed to have, and lacking which I was 
afraid I could not write anything that would carry conviction 
into the minds of others ; besides that, I was quite sure that all 
the pamphlets in the world would avail nought at this stage of 
the case, even though they should be written by much bigger, 
and cleverer, and a hundred-fold more influential men than I 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 161 

could pretend to be. I told the gentlemen also that I had made 
all my preparations to start that very night for Paris. 

They insisted, however ; they powerfully argued with me, and 
placed before me a vast amount of oral and documentary evidence 
calculated to give the case a different complexion. I strove hard 
to get out of it. I urged anew all my objections upon them, and 
I pleaded the shortness of the time left me for the task. It was 
no use; they persisted, they even accused me of sharing the 
general prejudice against the condemned man. Well, it has 
been my weakness through life to give way before pertinacious 
pressure. So I consented. It would be untruthful and mean 
in me to disguise the fact that the offer of thirty pounds in hard 
cash for my work may have had some slight influence with me. 

So I buckled to at once; and with the aid of a tub of cold 
water to keep my feet in, and about half a gallon of black, strong 
coffee, made from my own mixture and prepared after my own 
receipt,* I achieved within twenty-four hours a pamphlet 
extending over some fifty pages in print, which was at once 
submitted to the committee of the Society, and approved of. 

It seems hardly credible that the prejudice against that poor 
journeyman tailor was so general and so strong, that three 
printers refused the committee to have anything to do with the 
pamphlet, and that I had to find a printer willing to take the job. 
I left at once for Paris, with my thirty pounds in my pocket the 
largest sum I was ever paid for twenty-four hours' labour in the 
course of a working career extending over half a century now. 

I was subsequently informed that the committee found the 
same difficulty in procuring a publisher for the pamphlet. 

The end was what I had foreseen ; Franz Miiller was hanged 
in front of Newgate. The German pastor who attended him 
to the drop stated that, at the supreme moment, with the death- 
cap drawn over his head, Miiller had muttered a few words in 

* Take of perfectly dry old Mocha six parts, of Jamaica Mountain 
and Java five parts each. Bring the Java and Jamaica to the same state 
of dryness as the Mocha, by heating the raw berries gently on a 
porcelain plate. Roast the mixture to the bursting and scattering of 
the silver skin ; grind hot in a good fine mill. Place the powder in a 
double muslin bag, and suspend the latter in a coffee-pot ; pour boiling 
water over it, and let the extraction proceed a minute and a half. The 
proportion of coffee and water depend, of course, upon the strength of 
the infusion desired. I use one ounce and a half of coffee powder to 
a pint of boiling water. But twice the quantity of water will still give 
a cup of excellent coffee. - Always roast and grind your coffee fresh. 
Do not spoil the infusion by sweetening. Use cream or a teaspoonf ul 
of best Swiss milk (prepared in Switzerland) to a half-pint cup of coffee. 
If you take cognac in your coffee, burn it over the coffee. Do not use 
too much cognac, and sip the delicious beverage hot. 



162 REMINISCENCES OF 

German, implying a confession of his guilt. Dr. Jueh told me' 
however, afterwards, that Dr. Cappel, the clergyman in question, 
had subsequently admitted to him he might have mistaken the 
import of the condemned man's indistinct mutterings, aa he 
himself was at the time in a state of highly nervous excitement, 
and perhaps over-eagerly bent upon obtaining a confession in 
some shape or other, to save at least the immortal soul Belata 
refero. 

The Miiller pamphlet was a tour de force of mine, of which I 
was capable in the olden days 

Ere age, with his stealing steps, 
Had claw'd me in his clutch. 

I had to pay for it though : for the unnatural nervous excitement, 
which alone had enabled me to achieve the task, would not be 
calmed down at will and pleasure, but persisted in keeping me 
two days and two nights after its completion in a state of extreme 
liveliness. 

I had returned to Paris after one of my long rambles in the 
south of France I had been away for about four months, 
enjoying myself rarely in the dolce far niente of roaming from 
place to place, longer, indeed, than I had intended and was 
prepared and provided for to find that I had for the nonce 
repeated, on a small scale, my old feat of outrunning the 
constable. I sanguinely expected to find my usual employ- 
ment in Paris at once; but, instead, I found, to my bitter 
disappointment, that neither Bailliere nor Dr. Jburdain had 
occupation for me just then. Lessons could not well be picked 
up at a day's notice, and there was, to my intensest regret, no 
vacancy for translations on the newspapers for which I occa- 
sionally worked. A half -Bohemian friend of mine, Dr. Bother, 
who would now and then give me an article to write for some 
medical or scientific publications with which he was connected, 
had himself but little to do at the time. He kindly volunteered, 
however, to advance me fifty francs upon future work, reading me 
at the same time a most serious lecture upon my folly in spending 
all my means, trusting to good luck for the replenishment of my 
emptied purse. He had known me in the ancient days of my 
grandeur and splendour ; and he himself was just Bohemian 
enough to sympathise with me in my altered fortunes, yet not 
enough so to pass over without reproof my light-mindedness and 
thoughtlessness. I promised him that I would strive to mend 
in future, and I meant to keep my promise another paving- 
etone. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 163 

I took a small room at the H6tel du Nord, in the Rue de la 
PaTcheminerie, Faubourg St. Jacques, for the modest rental of 
ten shillings a month. I had a dinner every other day at the 
hotel charge 7id., inclusive of discretionary bread, which, I am 
ashamed to say it, I ate with very little discretion indeed. You 
see, breakfast and supper would have been luxuries in which I 
had no call to indulge, particularly as I always had a breakfast 
on the off days, when I dined luxuriously upon kd. fried fish, 
d. bread, \d. fried potatoes oh ! weren't they nice and crisp ! 
and a bottle of the best Paris beer at ~L$d. Said off-days' break- 
fast I got at a small cremerie near the old Morgue, long since 
removed to more commodious quarters. The place was called 
Cafe de Pfeconomie, which was not a misnomer, as 2d. sufficed to 
pay for a cup of milk-coffee and a (very) small roll butter the wise 
Bohemian eschews, for his scientific education teaches him the 
fearful and wonderful components and composition of that staple 
article of food. The roll was rayther small, as I have already 
insinuated, but you had the splendid chance afforded you of 
taking off half your appetite by a visit to the Morgue, before 
partaking of the frugal meal, or of consoling yourself there for 
its shortcomings after by the contemplation of the nothingness 
of all things human and terrestrial. 

Then there were my social expenses, and my menus plaisirs, or 
small amusements, to be provided for. For I had of course to go 
into the fashionable society of the Boulevards and the Champs 
i&ly 86*es, which necessitated a daily outlay of l|d for the glass of 
absinthe, which in the olden days gone, alas ! now, never to 
return would enable a man to luxuriate an hour and a half or so 
in the gay panorama passing before him, and to improve his 
mind by reading the papers nobly provided by the proprietor 
of the cafe. 

The total absence of all amusement is apt to make Jack a dull 
boy. Now I have a natural antipathy to dulness ; so I had my 
id. at Guignol, and another kd. with the strong man who used to 
break stones with his fists, and lift a quarter-ton weight with his 
teeth or with a lock of his hair. I watched this marvellous man 
assiduously for several weeks, trying to find out his modus 
operandi for the latter trick for I saw at once, of course, that it 
was a trick ; yet there seemed to be no doubt about the weight, 
as he invited the bystanders freely to essay to lift it off the box 
on which it rested. I f for one, tried, and failed lamentably. At 
last I fancied I heard a slight clicking sound whenever Hercules 
put down the weight, and that he seemed to fumble about the 
fore-part of the box whenever he set to to lift it. So I came to 
the conclusion that it was simply a hollow case, locking with 

M 2 



164 REMINISCENCES OF 

catch and spring to the actual weight in the box. Well, I did 
not peach, nor even did I impart the secret of my observations 
and conclusions to the poor performer, lest it should make him 
nervous. But I continued to give my halfpence nobly, fully 
satisfied with the pleasing thought that I had detected the trick. 

This, with about ten shillings a month for washing, boot- 
cleaning, and almsgiving none so poor but there are still poorer 
brought my expenses up to two guineas a month just about 
two guineas too much for me, who was then positively earning 
nothing. 

Now, in these olden days I was still a very primitive Bohemian 
a mere first-stager, in fact living as yet in truly paradisiacal 
ignorance of the bliss of credit and the torture of debt. 

Oh ! the cruel torture of debt. To be painfully nay, agonisingly 
conscious that you owe what you cannot pay ! 

Das Leben ist der Giiter hochstes nicht, 
Der Ubel argstes aber ist die Schuld. 

"Life is not the highest of blessings, but the worst of all evils is 
indebtedness I " This is not the true rendering of the citation ; 
still it may be so translated. 

There was clever, bright Henry Newt Barnett, now no more, a 
member of the Savage Club, a man of singular ability, originally 
a Baptist or Independent minister, who had left the Church for 
the literary career, an acute reasoner, a clear and logical writer. 
He was Bohemian to the backbone. It was a pity, but he was 
married, and had a family. Marriages, they say, are made in 
heaven : now, Bohemia is certainly not heaven ; so when a denizen 
of that land marries, he should, in my opinion, make up his mind 
to emigrate to more fertile fields and fatter pastures. 

Poor Barnett was in permanent pecuniary difficulties. He 
was a big powerful-looking man, and it gave me the shivers one 
day when he cried before me like a child, grievously lamenting 
that his debts would not let him sleep. Just then one of his 
creditors pounced upon him in the very club-room. I shall never 
forget the unhappy man's pathetic outcry to the bloodsucker, an 
eighty per cent, bill discounter. " Gracious heavens, sir, were 
it possible to coin the agony of mind I have undergone through 
that cursed bill, there would be ample funds to pay you and 
your whole tribe a hundredfold ! " I cannot say whether this 
cry, wrung from a tortured mind, made a very deep impression 
on Mr. Eighty per Cent., but he contented himself, for the 
nonce at least, with murmuring something about wanting only 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 165 

what was fair, and he yielded to my rather pressing invita- 
tion to leave the club-room, where he had no business. I 
learnt afterwards that it was all about a thirty-pound bill, dis- 
counted originally at twenty per cent, for three months, and 
renewed six times, with total payments of close upon forty pounds, 
yet leaving the unhappy acceptor still indebted to the full tune of 
the original thirty of which he actually had got only twenty-five. 
Alas ! at [the time when this occurred, my own paradisiacal 
innocence of debt had long, long been lost. So I could fully and 
acutely sympathise with my brother Bohemian and sufferer. 

There was Johnny Clarke, as fine and thoroughly natural an 
actor as ever trod the stage, and as good-hearted a fellow as one 
could wish to meet anywhere. He had once been 011 the high-road 
to most brilliant success in life, when a sad accident laid him on 
his back for many months. When he arose at last from his 
couch of suffering he was lame he, one of the most accomplished 
stage-dancers, the " king of the breakdown ! " Yet this did not 
stop him in his career, in which he soon achieved even a higher 
and more solid and legitimate reputation than ever before. 

Well, somehow the dire goddess dogged his footsteps. He 
fell into difficulties and debt. I remember meeting him once in 
Covent Garden, walking like one abstracted, and with deep lines 
of care in his kind funny face. It grieved me to see him thus, and 
I essayed the soothing spell of Bohemian sympathy upon him. 
He told me how the vulture of debt was preying on his vitals ; how 
he had fallen into the hands of bill-discounting bloodsuckers, and 
the whole lamentable tale which I knew but too well ; how he had 
been advised to apply to "companies" (limited and unlimited); and 
how they had well-nigh driven him now to the verge of madness, 
by exacting life-insurances, and no end of collateral securities, in 
addition to the solid guarantees offered by him. He was then on 
his way to an Advance and Discount Company, whose secretary 
we both knew as an amateur actor of no mean talent. A few 
days after I met Johnny again radiant and happy. He had 
succeeded at last in finding " loaners " who were not skinners by 
profession. 

But, as I have said, in those olden days I knew nought of 
borrowing ; so when,after some weeks' patient waiting in Micawber 
fashion for something to turn up, the only thing that did turn up 
was my landlord's polite request to settle the month's rent, I had 
to look up my relations. Had I been in London, I should have 
gone to my uncle. In Paris I had to cultivate my aunt, who came 
nobly to my assistance, only asking a pledge of my affection in 



166 REMINISCENCES OF 

return. There is a difference between uncles and aunts the 
former are more open-handed, as a rule ; the latter less extor- 
tionately usurious. In the olden days twenty per cent, was the 
London uncle's charge for taking care of your deposits ; I under- 
stand it is now twenty-five. Aunt in Paris is satisfied with nine 
per cent. On the other hand, she is apt to put a very low estimate 
upon your intended pledges of affection. 

I once had occasion to ascertain the deposit value of a dress 
suit. I found it to be three guineas in London to fifteen shillings 
in Paris. 

So, you see, with Amita Lutetiana, I had to make large inroads 
upon my personal property, just to raise the wind to blow me 
over a few months. 

After nigh upon four months' enforced idleness in this most 
unsatisfactory fashion, it was becoming rather close running with 
me, and I was getting uncomfortably near the end of my tether, 
when one morning early Dr. Jourdain knocked at my door like 
unto a messenger bringing tidings of comfort and joy. He had 
work for me hurrah ! 

It was that gentleman's habit to divide a book into six, seven, 
or eight parts, as the case might be, and distribute these parts 
among the same number of trustworthy competent translators, 
reserving for his own share the general editing of the book. In 
this way Bailliere, for whom the doctor worked, was enabled to 
bring out in a few weeks translations of brand-new foreign 
works. 

On this occasion the doctor brought me the sixth part of a 
pretty stiffish volume to do, asking me at the same time whether 
I could recommend some other competent translators for two 
more sixths to be done in a fortnight sharp. I proposed to take 
the half -volume, faithfully promising it should be done in time. 
After some demur he consented. 

I set to work there and then. I got in coffee, spirit of wine 
for my little boiler, oil for my lamp, and a tub of cold water to 
put my feet in. 

Nought else I needed. Eating and drinking draw the blood 
from the brain to the stomach, interfering thus injuriously with 
the operations of the higher organ. 

I sat down to my work about nine in the morning, and con- 
tinued at it for thirty-seven consecutive hours. It was ten o'clock 
in the evening of the second day when I had actually accom- 
plished close upon one-third of my task. I felt my brain in a 
whirl ; the pen dropped from my cramped fingers. An irre- 
sistible impulse seized upon me to rush forth into the street ; and 
nothing would serve me but I must make my way to the Eue 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 167 

do Bourgogne, where Jourdain lived, and ring his bell at eleven 
o'clock P.M. ! 

The valet was rather staggered when he saw me ; so was his 
master, who came out in dressing-gown, slippers, and nightcap, 
marvelling much what could possibly have brought me there at 
such an unconscionable hour ; which just then dawned upon me, 
and made me feel and look more than embarrassed. He was a 
sensible man, however, and kind-hearted withal. " I suppose 
you need money," he said, to my great relief. " Revera," I cheer- 
fully replied, " rem acu tetigisti." He handed me two hundred 
and fifty francs, with which I rushed away as madly as I had 
come. 

Sleep, in my then state of BUT 'excitation, being out of the 
question, I sat down again to work, and continued withont inter- 
mission till two P.M. next day. It was only then that I thought 
of going in for an afternoon's rest and recreation. 

I felt more than peckish, I was downright ravenous for food ; 
and no wonder ; I had tasted nothing but coffee for some sixty 
hours. I had ere this been obliged occasionally to dine upon a 
penny loaf and a vivid imagination ; but coffee, as an article of 
food, must yield the palm to the staff of life. 

James Hannay came one day to the club in a high state of 
classicity. " What do you think, boys, I dined on yestere'en P '' 
" The princely turbot' or the royal salmon," I replied at a ven- 
ture. " No, sir, nothing of the kind no fish, no flesh, no pulse, 
no cereals : upon the second satire of that grand old poet Horace 
* Ambubaiarum collegia.' " " Take anything with it ? " .asked 
Draper, the only other member present besides me. " Take any- 
thing with it, sir? No, nothing; yet it was a glorious feast." 
"A satire and nothing with it don't look to me a great feast, 
Hannay," cried Draper. " Now, we at home dined upon a paradox 
to-day, but we had green peas with them." 

For my own part, I must candidly confess that I would rather 
soberly dine any day with a sensible Amphitryon, like Draper, 
upon a pair of ducks with green peas than gloriously feast with a 
classical nuisance upon the very best satire ever written which 
would look to me a satire upon feasting. 

On this occasion I was, as I have already intimated, downright 
ravenous for something solid and substantial yet was I mindful 
of my promise to my friend Rother, then away from Paris on a 
long visit to Normandy, to recruit his somewhat impaired health 
so I wended my way to a tiptop restaurant in the Palais Royal, 
where all the delicacies of the season, wine included, with dis- 



168 REMINISCENCES OF 

cretionary bread, might be enjoyed at the moderate charge of 
two francs. 

I felt quite proud of this noble resolution of mine to forbear 
going in for luxurious and extravagant expenditure. 

Just then I unexpectedly came across a dear old chum whom 
I had not seen for more than a twelvemonth Baron Bronikoski 
or Bronikoczki, a Polish refugee, whose acquaintance I had made 
at Leipzig, when we were both students there. He was an orphan 
then and his own master, with an estate in Lithuania which 
brought him in something like four thousand pounds a year. 
But he passionately loved old Sarmatia's white eagle, and he 
execrated the White Czar. He fought with Bern at Ostrolenka, 
and was Uminski's aide-de-camp when the insurrection was finally 
drowned in blood by Paskewitch, that most overrated of Russian 
commanders, who could not possibly have achieved the feat with 
twice his host and three times his capacity, but for the criminal 
folly, the wretched self-seeking, and the petty rivalry and jealousy 
of the Polish leaders. 

The baron had to seek safety in flight, leaving the noble 
Nicholas to nobble his estates. He made his way to France, 
where the Government allowed him 100 francs a month. It was 
years after I had parted from him in Leipzig that I met him 
again at Dijon, where he was working at press as a journeyman 
printer for Pere Douillier ; and now I met him unexpectedly once 
again evidently in a state of slight dilapidation as to his toggery, 
which looked suspiciously like approaching that last stage of the 
shabby-genteel when the genteel is clearly on the point of depart- 
ing, leaving the shabby behind. 

He told me, with his customary charming naivete, that it 
being close upon the end of the month, his money had run out, 
and that he had had a frugal breakfast the day before, and nothing 
since. I knew that he was as proud as Lucifer, and would never 
accept assistance even from his intimates, nay, not even from 
Adam Czartoryski, whom he revered, and who greatly esteemed 
him. Still he was always open to an invitation to dinner by 
an old chum, which he would scrupulously insist upon returning 
in some shape upon the first opportunity that might offer. 

Now was it at all likely that I, with golden coin in pouch, 
should take a dear old friend and whilom brother-student to a 
low two-francs restaurant ? The thing would not bear thinking 
of. So the par nobile fratrum, he and I, went to claim moyen- 
nant finance, lien entendu the fraternal hospitality of the " Trois 
Freres Provencaux," and we had a nice little dinner, at the trifling 
charge of forty francs for the two. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 169 

Just when we were stepping forth from the portals of the 
famous brothers, arm in arm, and perhaps slightly elated, who 
should pass by and spot me but my friend Rother, just come 
back from Normandy, whose reproving glances I caught pretty 
plainly and unmistakably? It was something like the Devil 
meeting Brothers the prophet in Tottenham Court Road, when 

The Devil saw Brothers the prophet, 
And Brothers the prophet saw him. 

And I daresay Brothers the prophet did not like it. As for me, 
I'd as lief have seen the devil just then as my accusing conscience 
walking about in the shape of Dr. Rother. Yet, how could I have 
helped it ? 

Before we parted, my Polish friend invited me for the ap- 
proaching first of the month, when his allowance fell due, to a 
little dinner en famille, in his own " apartment," Rue St. Denis. 
He confided to me the exact state and condition of his domestic 
arrangements, and how Mademoiselle Aglae, a young modiste, 
" qui avait des bontes pour lui," would kindly consent to act as 
hostess. 

Punctual to appointment, I presented myself at five P.M. sharp 
at the baron's somewhat lofty residence au sixieme, in fact, in a 
mansion of very humble pretensions. 

Bronikoski received me in full rig braided coat and alL He 
had, of course, that morning had the first of the two customary 
monthly interviews with his kind aunt of White Cloaks Street. 

He looked resplendent. He was descended on the mother's 
side from the Niesvicz branch of the Radzivils, who have always 
had the reputation of singular courtliness. The baron did the 
fullest honour to this reputation. He received me in his humble 
(very humble indeed) apartment with the same stately grace as 
had it been in his old seigneurial castle in Lithuania. 

He was, indeed, a worthy representative of the glorious 
Sarmatian nobility. Fallen from fortune to penury, he never was 
guilty of an act of meanness he was, in fact, incapable of it to 
better his position. But he would nobly eke out by the labour of 
his brain and hands the small pittance granted him and his 
companions in misfortune and exile by the French Government. 
At Dijon I found him working at press. Here in Paris he was 
giving fencing lessons, being a most expert swordsman. Only 
just at this juncture his pupils were out of town. 

In genuine old Court fashion he introduced me to two very 
pretty little grisettes Mademoiselle Aglae and her friend, 
Mademoiselle Heloise who had been expressly invited to meet 



170 REMINISCENCES OF 

me, that we might form a snug little partie carree. The baron 
intimated hurriedly to me in German that Mademoiselle Heloise 
was in search of une passion serieuse. Forewarned, forearmed, I 
thought; and I resolved to be strictly serious with the young 
lady, but quite unimpassioned, as semi-marital entanglements, in 
my then position and with my roaming disposition, could not 
possibly have suited my book. 

Well, we went all on very well together, and I passed a most 
happy day, though I had some slight misgiving at first. 

There could be no doubt but the baron was very poor at the 
time, and the pretty hostess, I was informed, had been indisposed 
and out of work a month or so. Well, in the matter of dinner- 
parties, poverty, they say, will make people acquainted occa- 
sionally with strange table services, and Bohemia is not Belgravia. 
So I was ready and willing to make the most liberal allowance 
for shortcomings in the matter of plate and plates and platters ; 
but I must say I was not quite prepared to find the soup served 
in the wash-hand basin, and the salad mixed in an improvised 
bowl with a still more suspicious look about it. Eowever, ;as the 
two damsels assured me that " la vaisselle .avait ete lavee a 1'eau 
bouillante et a trois reprises," I let the water wash away a deal of 
natural squeamishness, and Christian charity cover a multitude 
of repellent reflections, and I allowed the young ladies to help 
me to soup ay, even to salad. 

We had six litres of the very best red and white wine that 
could be procured, in those glorious days of cheap living in Paris, 
at eight sous the litre. Alas ! nowadays you pay double the 
price, and you get muck liquid sourcrout, as a distinguished 
Hibernian lady friend of mine used to call it, with a gesture of 
ineffable disgust, when we were in Paris the year before last. 

The empty bottles made splendid candlesticks afterwards for 
the solid moulds laid in by the baron, which gave our supper- 
table later on. a most resplendent aristocratic appearance. 

I mixed the punch and the spiced wine in the soup-tureen 
and salad-bowl, with the most perfect freedom from any squeamish 
association of ideas. In Bohemia one gets soon accustomed to 
things as they are. We sang songs and spouted sentiments. 
Czar Nicholas caught it hot, you may be sure, more especially 
from the young ladies, who seemed to have a notion that he had 
horns and a tail. 

Poland was exalted to the highest skies, and Russia damned 
to the lowest depths of Pluto's realm, though the damsels, I verily 
believe, had not the least idea of the whereabouts of either 
country on the world's map. Some young students joined our 
jovial party about two in the morning, when the fun grew fast 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 171 

and furious, and the quatrieme and cinquieme sent up indignant 
protests against our " drunken riot," as they, in their selfish 
desire to sleep, termed our happy little party. At last, about 
five in the morning, we were peremptorily summoned by the 
concierge to separate and depart. It was perhaps all the better, 
for me at least, for Mademoiselle Heloise was growing alarmingly 
affectionate. I was beginning to call her "mon petit chou," 
which she but too eagerly reciprocated doubly by claiming me as 
her " gros chou-chou " 

The baron gave a party ; 
Where is that party now ? 

And where are they all that were gathered there ? In the grave 
all, except myself. But I hate being sentimental. 

I have been destined in my travels along the highways and 
byways of life to meet with many desdichados. 

Once upon a time, many long years ago, I lived in one of the 
small Walcot Cottages, off the Kennington Koad. Next door to 
me lived, in two rooms measuring together some 250 square feet, 
a gentleman descended on the father's side from Edward I. and 
Eleanor of Castile, on the mother's side from the Knights of 
Glyn branch of the Fitzgeralds. 

His name was Gustavus Butler Hippisley. He was the head 
and the chief representative of his family (see Royal Eed Book), 
so that, to make an extreme and most unlikely yet not absolutely 
impossible supposition, had all and every member of the Guelphs, 
Plantagenets, etc., been swept away, before his own demise, he 
might have been king of these realms ! Yet he was then vege- 
tating upon the bounty of a distant relative, and upon his literary 
contributions to magazines. Many and many a time have I seen 
him perambulate the small square of the cottages in dressing- 
gown and slippers, vestes cceterce tubulo, the rest of his toggery 
being up the spout. At certain fixed periods of the year he 
would walk forth in full rig into the great world of the Upper 
Ten, to dine with a wealthy relative. 

His father, he told me, had spent a fine fortune in the service 
of the South American republics, having raised at his own 
expense a full regiment of soldiers to fight for liberty and fame 
under his personal command. He, Gustavus Butler, the eldest 
son, had bravely taken his share in the fighting, and in the ruin 
ultimately brought -upon the family through the non-fulfilment 
of the republican engagements. It had been even worse for him 
than for his father ; for having outstayed his two years' leave of 
absence, he had lost his commission in the British army. 



172 REMINISCENCES OF 

During the time of my acquaintance with Colonel Hippisley 
he ranked as lieutenant-colonel in the South American and in 
the Spanish service, having fought in Spain under Evans I had 
a windfall of a few pounds. So I thought a nice little dinner to 
my neighbour Hippisley and a few more friends would not be a 
bad move to show my gratitude to fate for the unexpected favour. 
A distinguished general, whilom in the Portuguese service, but 
of Irish descent and wondrously Irish ways, used to visit the 
colonel. I understood he also was. under a cloud at the time. I 
invited him. Then there was another rather distinguished friend of 
mine, an ex-member of the Stock Exchange, who had at one time 
stood possessed of a quarter of a million, and had unhappily 
come down to an allowance of one pound a week, settled upon 
him by an old friend. 

He had introduced me some time before to another stray 
of fortune, a gentleman of the name of Sutcliffe, if I remember 
aright, an ex-admiral in the service of Peru or Chili, I could 
not for the very life of me say which. I only was told that 
P. or C., as the case may be, had diddled him out of a ship 
which had cost him some fifteen thousand pounds sterling, and 
out of three years' pay. He had come over to England to attach 
certain funds of the republic lodged in a London bank. Some 
months after I was told by a mutual friend the ex-Stock Exchange 
member that the poor man had elected to accept Is. 6d. in the 
pound, and his reinstatement in the naval service of the republic, 
in full discharge of all claims and demands ! "What else could he 
do, poor fellow! as he was growing old and had no other resources ? 
I know that at the time when I made his acquaintance he was so 
hard up that small loans of lowly coins would be acceptable to 
him. 

There were five of us assembled, then, in my grand dining- 
saloon 14 feet by 10 five men who had seen better days, to put 
it in a very mild way. Yet, I verily believe, the five of us could 
not there and then have raised among us a five-pound note, nay 
not to save our lives ! And how jolly we were, to be sure, and 
how the magic of a few bottles of wine carried us back into the 
glorious past, to revel in the remembrance of what had once been. 
Eheu ! tempi passati even these, for me again the sole survivor. 
The general, the admiral, the colonel, the quarter-millionaire are 
all gone to their last call and account : the old Bohemian alone is 
left. 

To return once more to earlier days : 

In the fall of 1836 I went on a lecturing tour from Lons-le- 
Saulnier, over Besan90n and other places, to Strasburg. Years 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 173 

before my friend Johann Heinrich Schnitzler, then a young man, 
had half jocularly, half seriously advised me to take to that pursuit. 
He was a great historian and statistician, as the world-wide fame 
achieved by him subsequently in these important branches of 
human lore has amply established, and he was indulgent enough 
to give me credit for some proficiency in these favourite branches 
of his own studies. Well, Schnitzler expressed his belief that I 
might advantageously lecture upon these subjects. 

By a strange coincidence I happened to be in Strasburg, as 
correspondent for the Aberdeen Free Press, when my old friend 
suddenly died, in the seventieth year of his most laborious, most 
useful, and most gentle life. It was in November, 1871 ; I had 
not seen Schnitzler for many, many long years, though 1 had 
heard how the Russian Czar had bestowed upon him the highest 
Orders of the Empire, such as the St. Vladimir, the St. Stanis- 
laus, the St. Anne sefc in brilliants, etc., and how, had he but 
chosen to stay in St. Petersburg, the highest offices in the State 
might have been open to him. He was not only a splendid 
historian and statistician, but one of the most elegant and correct 
French writers it has ever been my good fortune to know; and, 
what is most rare in an Alsatian who has acquired a perfect 
mastery of French, he handled German also with easy grace and 
fluency, such as is not often found even in German writers of 
the highest standing, as his innumerable contributions to fyie 
Augsburger Allgemeine Zeitung, extending over many years, amply 
testify. 

A few weeks before his lamented death, I met this great' 
scholar and brilliant writer accidentally at President Moller's, 
when he was kind enough to recognise my humble person, despite 
the ravages which years and suffering had wrought in me. He 
even accosted me with a hearty " Herr je ! alter Knabe, lebst 
Du denn auch noch? " We had in days of yore, in a moment 
of mutual expansion, drunk brothership, as the Germans have 
it. He was, in fact, one of the three with whom, to the best 
of my own recollection, I ever performed that ancient rite, 
Bronikoski and Dr. Joseph Hamm being the other two. I met 
Hamm in 1851, in Paris, along with Carl Schurtz, Braan, Eugene 
Oswald, and a few more ardent Germans good and genuine 
fellows all of them, but more especially Brother Joseph Hamm 
and, alas ! I know not lives he still or has ho also since been 
absorbed in the ever-growing majority. 

Well, Brother "Johann Heinrich had, half in joke, half in 
earnest, advised me to take to the lecturing line, which he assured 
me was not by any means a difficult nor altogether an unprofitable 
pursuit, if the lecturer could but manage to attract an audience, 



174 EEMINISCENCES OF 

and put himself in thoroughly harmonious accord with that 
audience a comparatively easy task, he said, if the lecturer would 
only bear in mind the golden rule that he should never attempt 
to lecture his hearers, but lecture to them, or rather address them 
as a special pleader would a bench of judges, striving to pro- 
pitiate their goodwill by judiciously humouring their likely likes 
and dislikes, their patent predilections and prejudices. 

Schnitzler was a wise man of Alsatia, up to snuff in every 
way, as the vulgar saying hath it, and a large pinch above. He 
knew the French thoroughly and all their little foibles ; yet he 
loved them dearly, and would compassionately tolerate their 
shortcomings somewhat in the fashion as a sensible good-natured 
husband ,. though he may be over-painfully conscious of the faults 
and follies of his beloved wife, will yet indulgently humour them. 
So he cautioned me most emphatically, should I ever have to 
lecture to a French audience upon French history, notably upon 
French wars, never to let facts stand in the way of the very 
largest sympathetic appreciation of the sublime grandeur of the 
great French nation, the supreme strategic genius and exceeding 
tactical skill of French commanders, and the all-conquering 
irresistible valour of French troops, particularly a I'arme blanche, 
in bayonet charges. 

" Always bear this in mind," he said to me, " that the French 
do not like being beaten. They can stand defeat, indeed, when 
there is positively no help for it, and when no ingenuity will 
serve to explain it away ; but what they cannot and will not 
stand, is to be told of it to their faces, more especially if the 
party cheeking them thus expects to be paid for the information." 
Being now absolutely thrown upon my own resources, I 
remembered Schnitzler's advice, and acted upon it to the fullest 
extent, and I may say I was fairly successful. But, ye gods ! 
what sad havoc I made of the facts of history! what awful 
liberties I took, to be sure, with the fame of anti-French com- 
manders ! I may claim the proud distinction of being one of 
those who managed to inflict a defeat upon Vilainton at Toulouse, 
and I would have beaten him at Orthez too nay, for the matter 
of that, at Salamanca and even at Vittoria but that I found this 
too hard a nut to crack. Shade of the great commander, forgive 
me ! You had gained so many glorious victories that I thought 
you might generously afford to spare me one or two of them to 
make the pot boil. As for Bliicher or Bluckaire I despoiled 
the great Marshal Forward even of the right pronunciation of his 
honest name, you see he was nowhere. He never won a victory 
over the French, nay not even at the Catsbrook or at Mockern. 
It was simply that Macdonald and Marmont threw away these 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 175 

battles through their insensate blundering and remissness, and 
ce sacre Prussien (this always draws with the French ; it is a 
capital trump card to play for a lecturer who would place himself 
in perfect harmony with the feelings of a French audience) was 
left to pick them up. No, no ! he had not won these battles ; 
the French commanders had simply lost them, which was truly 
a distinction with a difference, doing credit at least to my 
thorough appreciation of Brother Schnitzler's counsel. 

As for Waterloo why, of course, had it not been for Napoleon's 
strange "unconsciousness" of the fact that he had inflicted a 
crushing defeat upon Bliicher at Ligny and St. Amand, on the 
16th, and for his inexplicable delay in despatching Grouchy to 
Wavre to finish despatching the routed Prussians there ; and had 
it not been for Grouchy's treacherous refusal " de marcher sur le 
canon de I'Empereur," and for various other untoward circum- 
stances ; and last, though certainly not least which, however, 
from a proper regard for the sensitive feelings of my hearers, I 
prudently omitted to mention for the unreasonable obstinacy of 
the thick-skulled and dense-brained Britishers, who could not be 
made to understand that they were thoroughly defeated, selon les 
regies why I managed to make it appear as plain as a pikestaff, 
had it not been for all these little things, there surely could have 
been no doubt but that the great Napoleon would have marched 
triumphantly to Yienna and to Berlin, and to ever so many other 
capitals, not even excepting London, that gloriously " lootable " 
city, as old Lebrecht of Wahlstadt proclaimed it to be ; for, of 
course, the Emperor would then have availed himself of the 
American Fulton's steamers to carry his victorious legions across 
the Channel. 

My peroration to this grand "historic" lecture I boldly and 
bodily stole from ^3schylus. It was not England and Prussia, 
Wellington and Bliicher, who overthrew France and Napoleon on 
the plains of Waterloo ; but it was Fate, which broke the beam of 
the balance, and made the coalition's scale sink. 

Anent the alleged unconsciousness of Napoleon of the crushing 
defeat and total rout he had inflicted upon the Prussians on the 
16th of June, as even certain English historians, with the true 
facts of the case, and the Duke's famous despatch of the 19th of 
June to Bathurst before their eyes, brazenly venture to assert, it 
may seem most strange, but it is nevertheless true, that Bliicher 
himself also had riot the least notion how very badly and crush- 
ingly he had been beaten, and that the great Duke equally shared 
in the absolute unconsciousness of this French fiction. In his 
despatch he says, totidem verbis, " The Prussian army maintained 



176 REMINISCENCES OF 

their position " (at Sambref, with Ligny and the village of St. 
Amand in front) " with their usual gallantry and persever- 
ance, against a great disparity of numbers." No doubt the old 
marshal lost heavily in men, as he was fearfully outnumbered, 
his fourth corps, under Biilow, not having joined him at the time. 
The Duke continues in his despatch, "Although Marshal Bliicher 
had maintained his position at Sambref, he still found himself 
much weakened by the severity of the contest, and he determined 
to fall back and concentrate his army upon Wavre, whither he 
marched in the night after the action was over" which certainly 
does not look much like a rout nor does the marshal's promise 
to "support the Duke, in case he should be attacked, with one or 
more corps, as might be necessary." Surely, surely ! some people 
ought not to take upon themselves to write history. To lecture 
upon it is of course quite a different thing : " verba volant, scripta 
manent." 

It is a trite old saying, that men's views, impressions, and 
opinions of other men and their doings, and of things in general 
nay, even of the most patent facts will differ, there being, 
generally, two sides to them, the objective and subjective ; and it 
is but in human nature that the latter should somehow override 
the former. Oliver Goldsmith, if I mistake not, was to that 
prince of coxcombs, Horace Walpole, nought but an inspired 
idiot ! Gracious heavens ! the immortal writer of the immortal 
" Yicar," the sweet singer of " Sweet Auburn," an idiot ! inspired, 
true ; but still an idiot ! Porson, whom I somehow believe to 
have known Greek better than his mother tongue, sneered at 
Gibbon's English !* but then Porson swore by David Hume, I 
have heard. 

The late Mr. William Whately, Q.C., who was a pupil of mine 
in German and French, told me that he looked upon Lord 
Brougham as one of the greatest lawyers that ever sat on the 
woolsack ; while Sir Bernard Bosanquet, another pupil of mine, 
expressed to me his hearty concurrence in the bitter criticism 
passed upon the great Harry by an eminent rival of his 
Lyndhurst, I believe viz., that he was the merest sciolist, with a 
smattering of well-nigh everything except the law. 

Mr. Whately was a sound scholar, an acute legist, a learned 

* Spurgeon made a caustic and most cutting remark the other day 
upon the recent Revision of the New Testament. Translators, he said, 
in his sly, humorous way, should possess a perfect knowledge of both 
the language from which, and the one into which, they translate. Now 
it seemed to him that the revisers, who were most likely excellent 
Greek scholars, had but an indifferent knowledge of English. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 177 

jurisconsult, and an adroit, eloquent advocate. He was a kind 
friend to me. He told me many amusing stories of the law and 
lawyers, more particularly of the famous Chitty how that bright 
legal luminary had, in his sharp fishings for flaws in indictments, 
successfully urged upon courts the 'cute distinction between a 
duck and a drake, between a living and a dead sheep ; how he 
had got a murderer off by an appeal to ordeal by battle, based 
upon an unrepealed statute of King Edward I., and other similar 
tours de force et tfadresse. He told me also a little achievement 
of his own. He was counsel in a case in which the defendant, 
his client, was called upon to answer, inter alia gravamina, a 
charge of having spit in plaintiff's face. Both parties were 
Pershore men. 

In the course of his address Whately urged that, as to the 
spitting, however objectionable it might appear from an aesthetico- 
ethical point of view, yet it was, after all, but a time-honoured 
Pershore custom, as a monkish historian of olden time plainly 
told us : " Homines de Pershore cum irritati seu exasperati, inter 
se salivam expuere solent." 

It would appear the quotation answered its intended purpose. 

When he told me the story, I must needs ask him, with the 
ingenuousness of innocence, to vouchsafe me some further infor- 
mation anent the said " monkish historian." "Well, he gave me 
such'i& look. I must plead guilty to an inconvenient foible that 
way I always want to know more. However, I am not the only 
one afflicted with this objectionable habit. Many years ago I 
told my lamented friend William Brough the story of the 
Emperors Francis and Alexander and the King of Prussia; how 
they, in 1814, taking an early walk through the streets of Paris 
unattended, met an urbane gentleman, who obligingly constituted 
himself their cicerone, simply asking for the names of the three 
gentlemen whom it had been his good fortune to meet on this 
auspicious morning. Francois, Empereur d'Autriche ; Alexandre, 
Empereur de Russie; Frederic Guillaume, Roi de Prusse, was 
the reply severally given with the utmost apparent simplicity. 
The Parisian, convinced in his mind that the strangers were un- 
gratefully making fun of him, ironically congratulated them 
upon their agreeable occupation in life, and walked off slightly 
ruffled. Alexander called him back, to ask him to whom he and 
his two friends were indebted for so much courtesy. " Who I 
am ? Why, the Great Mogul," capping thus the three jokers, as 
he thought them to be. 

Well, William told this little tale to a Scotch gentleman, who 
listened attentively, nodding approvingly; then, after a brief 

N 



178 REMINISCENCES OF 

pause of pondering, asked with anxious eagerness, " And was he 
the Great Mogul, Mr. Brough ? " 

Mr. Whately also told me some anecdotes illustrative of the 
marvellous skill in imitating handwriting for which Sir Frederick 
Pollock was famed then Attorney- General, afterwards Lord Chief 
Baron of the Court of Exchequer; for instance, once upon a time 
Sir Frederick had audaciously perpetrated a legal opinion in Sir 
William Webb Follett's handwriting, but couched in the most 
outrageously obscure and involved phraseology, which being sub- 
'sequently submitted to poor Sir William for " reconsideration," 
that brightest of legal luminaries could not, for the life of him, 
account for the strange state of hallucination in which he must 
have penned the precious document. 

On one occasion, Mr. William Whately entertained as guest 
a leading solicitor from Liverpool. He took this gentleman to- 
Westminster Hall with him, to the Court of Queen's Bench, 
where the Attorney- General (Sir Frederick Pollock) was just 
then conducting an intricate law case. At his visitor's urgent 
solicitation, he sent a slip to Mr. Attorney, asking him for a 
sample of his skill in imitating handwriting. The gentleman 
from Liverpool appended his name to the paper. A few minutes 
after, the slip was returned, with a few words added, expressing 
Sir Frederick's regret that he could not just then comply with 
the request. 

Coming out of court after, Mr. Whately and his provincial 
friend met Sir Frederick in the Hall, who, to the two gentlemen's 
intensest surprise, smilingly asked them how they liked this 
sample of his skill, producing at the same time the original slip 
sent up to him, which he had so closely imitated that neither 
Mr. Whately nor his friend had the least suspicion of the fact. 

Andrew Halliday had a pretty talent of his own that way. 
He could also imitate any handwriting at a moment's notice. I 
once defied him to imitate mine. A few days after Jamie Grant 
took me severely to task for certain breaches of the laws of 
orthography in an article sent in by me to the Morning Advertiser. 
Upon my indignant denial that I had sent in even a line, the 
copy was produced. That wretch Halliday had perpetrated one 
of his vile forgeries ; yet I could have sworn to my own hand- 
/, writing. 

\ My connection with the Morning Advertiser extended over 
many years, and it was almost uninterruptedly of a pleasant 
nature. Jamie Grant, with his little foibles, which were all of 
them excusable, and most of them harmless, was a right good 
fellow in the main, and by no means over-exacting as an editor. 
Mr. Smalley, the Secretary, was an excellent man, with an in- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 179 

telligent appreciation of the occasionally pressing wants * of 
literature; and my much-lamented dear friend Colonel Alfred 
Bate Richards, was emphatically a gentleman. 

Under his editorship I worked on the paper at home and 
abroad. The biographic sketches of men who have made the 
new German Empire appeared first in the Morning Advertiser. 
The Colonel was a very old friend of mii;e. I knew him when 
he was editor of the then newly-started Daily Telegraph, poor 
Sleigh's unlucky lucky venture, to the starting of which the 
great Richard Cobden had contributed certain funds a fact but 
little known, with which I became acquainted through my friend 
Julius Faucher, then Cobden's Secretary, an eminent German 
political economist and leading free-trader later on, and up to 
the time of his decease in Italy a few years back, a distinguished 
Progressist Member of the Prussian Commons. The Star was in 
gestation then, and Dr. Faucher advised Cobden to help Sleigh 
to start the Telegraph as a ballon d'essai. Wheels within wheels, 
you see. 

After my lamented friend Richards' death, a new editor of the 
Morning Advertiser was appointed a Pharaoh who knew not 
Joseph, nor cared to know him, so my connection with the journal 
ceased. 

To return. 

Why, I have even heard the immortal Milton spoken of rather 
slightingly, and Byron exalted to the highest of all skies, by no 
less a personage than Dr. Maginn, the very man who had assailed 
the Childe's Don Juan, and other high-jplass productions of the 
noble bard, in the very bitterest vein of hostile criticism. 

It was many years ago, Eheu ! fugaces anni Idbuniur when I 
was with the late Jatnes Fraser, that I made the acquaintance of 
Dr. William Maginn. His charming and most amiable daughters 
were among my pupils. Poor Fraser, one of the kindest and best 
friends I ever met in life, was then dying, slowly but surely, of an 
English gentleman's ferocious brutality. It was on a glorious 
summer night when there were assembled in the parlour behind 
the shop in Regent Street, the proprietor of the establishment 
and of the then famous Eegina Magazine ; that noble Irish 
Corinthian, glorious Father Prout, William Maginn, Charles 
Ackerley Nimrod, the mighty hunter before the lords of the 
land who had run over from France on a flying visit, in bold 
defiance of a host of sheriffs' officers on the look-out for him ; 
the future sage of Chelsea, with the budding honours of " Heroes 
and Hero Worship " still fresh and green upon him ; Thackeray, 
that wondrous luminary, one of whose resplendent rays was just 

N 2 



180 REMINISCENCES OF 

then bursting upon a pleasingly dazzled world of readers, 
brightly reflected from the polished facets of the great Hoggarty 
diamond ; and my own humble self : specially retained on the 
occasion to prepare an iced cup, for great was my fame in those 
days for this noble branch of practical ethics. It was a glorious 
night, a blessed night, which will ever weigh heavy in the scale of 
my most blissful reminiscences. Poor James was exceptionally 
bright and sprightly ; his saccharometer had that day given him 
hope and happiness. ISTimrod told adventures of field and flood 
in his own inimitable way. The Father gave us his famous 
receipt for brewing a bowl " fit for the gods on high Olympus, 
and the men then socially assembled in the Regina parlour," 
which he said differed from Schiller's equally famous receipt only 
in the unimportant omission of the " aqueous " element, " every 
dhrap of wather you add spoils the punch." Tom Carlyle grew 
exuberantly enthusiastic upon Milton, coming down upon the 
company somewhat heavily, and perhaps unseasonably, with long 
quotations from the two Paradises and "Samson Agonistes," 
interspersed with English-German compounds of inordinate 
extent, until somehow the Doctor's wrath was kindled, which he 
proceeded to wreak upon the immortal bard. I verily believe I 
remember he called him a puritanical prig : I would not be sure, 
however, it is such an awful thing to contemplate, and I know he 
did not mean it. 

Now the late Lord Chelmsford would have taken the sage to 
his heart there and then. He was the most absolute votary at 
Milton's shrine I ever met with. He knew at least the whole of 
"Paradise Lost" by heart, and could and would repeat any 
passage from it called forth at random. I gave lessons in Mr. 
Thesiger's family, and had the proud privilege of passing now 
and then an hour or so in his society. He told me he had com- 
mitted to memory the whole of the immortal epic by bits whilst 
shaving in the morning ! 

Lord Chelmsford was one of the best of men, and a truly kind 
friend to me. When he was Attorney- General he recommended 
me warmly to Sir James Graham, for a professorship at one of 
the Queen's Colleges in Ireland then about to be established. It 
was with a beaming countenance, reflecting his own sincere 
pleasure with the good news that he showed me Sir James' 
favourable reply. Alas ! it was not to be. The monstrous 
coalition between the then yet uneducated Tories following the 
lead nominally of the man of stable mind, but in reality of Mr. 
Disraeli, and the Whigs and Cobdenites combined, succeeded in 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 181 

driving from power one of the best, most honest, and most 
patriotic Ministries that ever presided over England's destinies. 

Sir Frederic would occasionally tell me Milton anecdotes. 
Thus he told me how Lord Thurlow, when still an undergraduate, 
had got so absorbed in and carried away by the divine description 
of the divine encounter in heaven, that he exclaimed excitedly : 
"A fine fellow," meaning Satan; "by God! I ivish he had 
won!" 

Sir Bernard Bosanquet, a retired judge, who studied German 
with me when a septuagenarian, and mirdbile dictu acquired it, 
told me a companion anecdote to this. Baron Kichards, one of 
his colleagues on the bench, got so carried away by the perusal 
of the ever-memorable Bardell and Pickwick case, that when he 
came to the verdict, he jumped up excitedly, and, dashing the 
book into a corner, exclaimed : " What the Dickens could Gaselee 
be about, and the jury ? Why, the verdict is against evidence 
it cannot stand ! " 

The different appreciation by different men of the doings and 
productions of others is, after all, simply a matter of opinion, and 
therefore easily accounted for ; but when it comes to matters of 
fact patent to the senses, to events and occurrences passing in 
sight and hearing of the parties relating them subsequently to 
others, it seems rather difficult to realise the subtle subjectivity 
of views and impressions which must underlie the more or less 
widely divergent descriptions of different professed eye and ear 
witnesses. Tot capita, tot aententice, seems to be the general rule, 
concurrent accounts the exception. So, in my " rectifications " 
of historical facts, I might be pretty sure to have always some 
" authority " or other concur with me, to fall back upon in case of 
need in support and justification of any lapses I might choose to 
tumble into. 

At a later period in life I had occasion to become myself an 
authority albeit on a small scale on certain historical events 
and occurrences then actually taking place within the sphere of 
my own ken and observation ; and I only wish I had then been so 
wise as to liberally extend the practical application of my friend 
Schnitzler's sage counsel to my reports of what I saw and heard 
in those days. It would certainly have been so much more pro- 
fitable to me. But what would you have ? I never knew how to 
be worldly wise. 

In 1866 I was sent out by a leading London paper as special 
correspondent to report the doings of the Prussian army in what 
turned out to be the ever-famed seven days' campaign in Bohemia, 



182 REMINISCENCES OF 

and seven weeks' war between Prussia and Austria and her 
German allies. (It may be counted seven weeks dating from. 
7th June, when Manteuffel marched into Itzehoe, to the 27th 
July, when Marienberg, the fortress defending Wiirzburg, was 
cannonaded a few hours by the Prussians.) In the course of my 
experience in these most exciting times I had occasion to observe 
several curious instances of the wonderful power of what I crave 
permission to term " hallucinative impressiveness " in the genus 
"special correspondent," variety "graphic." One of the most 
distinguished of these gentlemen persistently presented General 
Edelsheim, commander of the Austrian cavalry, with a complete 
" run" of brilliant victories, strangely enough, always ending in the 
victor's run in advance to the rear. Another equally distinguished 
gentleman accomplished the truly stupendous feat of slaying 
three battalions out of two of a famous Magdeburg regiment 
engaged in the battle of Sadowa and Chlum, giving the "graphic" 
leader-writer of the organ which he represented abroad in this 
particular instance very much abroad indeed the opportunity of 
writing a splendid leader anent Pyrrhic victories. At the time 
when this gentleman's correspondence was just on the point of 
being published in a German version at Berlin, I happened to 
meet there an old friend of mine, who was charged with the 
responsible task of translating the English letters into the 
German vernacular. It was upon my recommendation that this 
graphic episode was left out of the German translation. Though 
I got but small thanks at the time, it turned out afterwards that 
the German Staff were somewhat of my opinion, reducing in 
their official account the "fearful" losses suffered by the unlucky 
regiment to remarkably small proportions. 

I have made few enemies in the course of a pretty long life 
none ever wilfully or wittingly. But the few who have ever 
chosen to take a dislike to me have always gone in for it with a 
will. However, it is unprofitable work to rake up dead ashes and 
stir dying embers, and I will not import an element of bitterness 
into these reminiscences. I really would pass this irksome 
subject over altogether in silence here, but that I would wish to 
account for the omission of certain episodes in my life which I 
could not possibly touch upon without bitterness. 

Pity that the political director of the journal which I was sent 
out to represent had a personal dislike to me ; that he, according 
to his own admission after the crash of Sadowa, knew very little 
of or about Germany ; and, lastly, that the general tendency of 
the paper was anti-Prussian and pro- Austrian, with an almost 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 183 

incredible excess of Napoleomania. Had it not been for these 
little trifling drawbacks, my correspondence might have proved 
more useful and more acceptable. 

I was sent out without a line of introduction to anyone. I 
tried my chance with Prince Frederick Charles. I found it no 
go, to use an expressive vulgarism. I did not blame the great 
general for his point-blank refusal to allow me to attach myself 
to the fortunes of his army. I must confess that correspondents 
at the seat of war are sometimes most inconvenient plagues to 
military commanders nay, that they may unwittingly do much 
harm. In this very campaign, the special of a leading English 
journal once discussed in his letter from Briinn the imprudence 
of King William to expose himself there to capture by an Austrian 
cavalry raid, .and speculated upon the momentous consequences 
such an event would be likely to produce. 

I had the good fortune of meeting some dear old friends of 
mine in Breslau ; among others, Professor Tellkampf now, alas ! 
no more who was then Member of the Prussian House of Lords 
for the University of Breslau and Privy-Councillor Lowig. I 
also knew Professor Homer, Dr. Cams, and others, through 
whom I obtained an introduction to the Zwinger Club, to several 
high officers, to Dr. Hobrecht, Mayor of Breslau, to the editor of 
the Breslau Gazette, Dr. Stein, and to other leading members of 
the Silesian press, also to the saloons of the Countess Oriola. 
I found myself thus placed in a most favourable position for 
obtaining the earliest and most trustworthy intelligence from the 
seat of war. 

Still I tried my best to be permitted to accompany the Crown 
Prince. On the 22nd June I went to Neisse, furnished with 
letters of warm recommendation to the prince's physician. When 
I reached Neisse, the prince was addressing the authorities of the 
city, in the open place before the War School. I took notes of 
the heads of his address, and took a short walk afterwards round 
the fortifications, to let a proper time elapse before presenting my 
credentials. 

I had known Neisse in the olden days the fortress as de- 
signed by General Wallrab, the famous military engineer. 

Wallrab was a favourite with the great Frederick. He was a 
man of expensive tastes, so he sold the plan of Neisse to Maria 
Theresa. He was found out. The King wished to spare him, 
and afforded him a locus pcenitentice. Wallrab was a Freemason 
so was the King. - At a meeting of the lodge Frederick made a 
statement to the effect that one of the brothers had committed 
a fearful breach of trust, and he urgently invited that brother to 



184 REMINISCENCES OF 

obtain his pardon by a free confession. Wallrab kept his peace : 
when he left the lodge he was arrested, and confined for life in 
the Star fort of Magdeburg. 

v- Since I had seen Neisse last, very considerable alterations had 
been made in the fortifications. Little was I aware, all the time 
I was thus gazing around me, of two spying eyes that followed 
my movements. 

When I went to deliver my credentials, the doctor was not in, 
and I was told to call again in an hour. I went meanwhile to a 
confectioner's to refresh. Here I found myself suddenly arrested 
as an Austrian spy. The Austrian visa on my passport was to 
tire acute police mind confirmation strong as Holy "Writ. 

The day before, a friend of mine, Mr. William Black, the 
distinguished novelist, who was out there as special correspondent 
for the Star, I believe, had been arrested somewhat in the same 
fashion. 

I was led before General Lewald, the commander of Neisse, 
who bullied me wofully, threatening to have me shot, but proved 
amenable to reason in the end, when he turned the vials of his 
high wrath a-nd displeasure upon the over-officious policeman, 
who had a bad time of it indeed. I was permitted to depart in 
peace, without a stain upon my character, as they say in the 
courts. 

There is a story told of a gentleman who engaged a car in 
Dublin, for an extreme distance of four miles, having unfor- 
tunately only sixpence, the legal fare, in his pocket. When he 
tendered this small coin to the driver, the unhappy man cried, 
with pathetic grief and an appealing glance to heaven, " Ah ! 
your honner, by the Holy Yirgin, I wish only you had left me 
where you found me ! " When we had left the general's presence, 
my captor and ex-custodian said to me, with a grunt of utter dis- 
gust, " Devil take it, sir, I wish I had only left you where I found 
you." Meanwhile the Crown Prince had left Neisse, and I had to 
return to Breslau re infectd. 

Baffled in my purpose to attend the army under the command 
of the Crown Prince, I had to wait the course of events in 
Breslau, where I found myself placed, however, in the very 
centre of trustworthy intelligence from the seat of war, as nearly 
every scrap of official and authentic information was benevolently 
communicated to me. Even Prince Adolphus Hohenlohe, an old 
Prussian cavalry general, who happened to be in the Silesian 
capital at the time, would not deem it too much condescension on 
his part to give a call at the Golden Goose when there was 
anything of special importance to impart to me. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 185 

Here I also met General Klapka, passing through Breslau on 
his way to take in hand the organisation of the Hungarian 
prisoners of war, which Bismarck and Moltke were contemplating 
at the time one of the most perilous moves that could be devised 
against Austria, and which I am convinced had a preponderating 
share in bringing about the rather sudden conclusion of peace. 
However, I must say that I had reason to know that the general 
pretty clearly foresaw his intended expedition would, most 
likely be nipped in the bud, and that he was by no means over- 
sanguine or enthusiastic about it. 

I faithfully transmitted all information to my employers in 
London. Well, somehow or other, I could not succeed in giving 
satisfaction at headquarters. Could I but have managed to let 
the "veterans of Austria" be victorious in every encounter with 
the "hasty levies of Prussian tailors and shoemakers, tinkers, 
and bakers, and candlestick makers," as our " political director" 
had so confidently predicted they would be, and as, to speak the 
honest truth, nine people out of every ten in England at the time 
wished and expected them to be, I am quite sure it would have 
been all right with me. Keuter's monstrously exaggerated 
despatch anent the battle of Trautenau, went down with my 
employers and with the British public like fresh butter; my 
plain unvarnished account of the true facts of the affair was 
contemptuously ignored. 

After Sadowa, King William, in his despatch to Queen Augusta, 
said that twenty Austrian guns had been taken. This was simply 
a clerical error, the number being two hundred, as I knew and 
reported upon the very highest authority. Well, I got a severe' 
reprimand for my " gross exaggeration." What mattered it that 
it turned out in the end that I had been right ? Not even a line 
of apology was vouchsafed to me. 

However, it is unprofitable to dwell upon such petty draw- 
backs in the experience of a " special " abroad, where the Jupiter 
Tonans at home is so hopelessly abroad in everything. 

A few days after the Titanic struggle at Sadowa, I went to 
inspect the shady and seamy side of war glorious war ! to gaze 
on the sad battle-fields, and on the mournful graves; on the 
promising crops trampled down, and foreshadowed hollow-eyed 
famine staring threateningly instead ; to view the hospitals and 
ambulances, where thousands of men, that a brief fortnight before 
had moved about in the full prime and pride and vigour of life, 
were expiring in untold agony, or passing slowly to the unima- 
ginable misery of having henceforth to fight the hard battle of 
life with maimed body or shattered constitution. 



186 REMINISCENCES OF 

Oh, the sight of war stripped bare of its glittering trappings ! 
lokanna's face, with the silver veil lifted off 

With features horribler than hell e'er traced 
On its own brood ! 

and the unspeakable misery of the after-crop ! In 1871, when I 
was at Elberfeld as correspondent for the Aberdeen Free Press* 
I -had occasion to call upon a gentleman residing in the im- 
mediate vicinity of Barmen. He was temporarily absent when I 
called, and I was received by a young lady in deep mourning, 
whose thin, pale, half-transparent face bore the unmistakable 
mark of a threatening early death. I had called for some special 
information on the subject of the relief of the poor in Elberfeld 
and Barmen. As the young lady was unable to give me the 
papers referring to the matter, I was shown into a room to await 
the return of the master of the house. There my eyes fell on a 
large family Bible which lay on a side table. It has always been 
a weakness of mine to thrust my nose into every book I see, even 
though I may have read it before, and over and over again. I 
have a notion that there is always something to be got out of 
almosb any book, some new information or new light upon some 
subject or other, which may not have struck the reader before. 
So I opened the book at the title-page, which showed that it 
dated from the commencement of last century. Between the 
title-page and index a few fly-leaves had been inserted, bearing the 
usual records of the family. As I felt that I had no business to 

* I am proud to say I have been connected for years with this 
leading organ of Liberal opinion in the north of Scotland, and may 
claim to be on terms of cordial friendship with the editor, Mr. William 
Alexander, and the publisher, "Mr. Alexander Marr although, strange 
to say perhaps, I never saw either of these gentlemen, and they are 
equally ignorant of my own personal presence. It was in 1870, just 
before the outbreak of the Franco-German War, when my lamented 
friend Andrew Halliday asked me to write the weekly London letter for 
the Free Press. It was in that paper that I boldly and uncompro- 
misingly predicted the German successes and the downfall of the 
French Empire. It was at a time when most British editors would 
have looked upon my vaticinations as the outcome of political madness. 
Mr. Alexander inserted them in the columns of his paper without the 
omission or alteration of a word. So did the Liverpool Porcupine, for 
which also I was writing at the time. I have had the misfortune of 
having to send my views and impressions to certain other journals, 
whose editors would never permit them to go in without having first 
undergone a cruel process of excision by way of editing ! based mostly 
upon a blissful ignorance of the subject-matter to which they related. 

I trust, D.V., to soon resume once more my old connection with the 
Aberdeen Free Press. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 187 

pry into these, I turned them rapidly over, and went on to the 
index, when my eye was irresistibly attracted by the numerous 
ominous black crosses which marked nearly every entry on 
the page facing the index. I could not resist the temptation 
to read. I found that the gentleman for whose arrival I was 
waiting there had had a family of eight children, four sons 
and four daughters. His wife had died some twenty years 
ago, and all the daughters in their childhood. Of the sons, 
the eldest had fallen at Diippel, in the Danish war of 1864. 
Following the entry of his death, the father's hand had traced 
these words : " Woe is unto me ! the pride of my house is laid 
low, and the prop of my age hath been taken away ! " In 1866, 
two sons, the one an officer, the other a soldier in the Prussian 
army, had met their deaths for King and Fatherland as they have 
it here the one at Gitschin, the other at Koniginhof. Here, 
again, the joint record of the father's bereavement was followed 
by a few words of intensest grief, but also pious resignation : 
" Lord, Thy hand is heavy upon me. My misery is more than I 
can bear; yet Thy will be done. Thou knowest best." Then 
came the entry of the marriage of the youngest and last sur- 
viving son, on Sunday, 17th July, 1870, with the broken 
young rose whom I had seen there could be no doubt 
about it, as she told me her father would soon be back and then 
came the final entry : " My Oscar, the youngest, the last, the 
best-beloved of my sons, died on the 21st August, of wounds 
received in the accursed -battle of Mars-la-Tour. The Lord hath 
given, the Lord hath taken away. Praised be the name of the 
Lord ! " But the entry was blurred and scarcely legible, bearing 
witness that, however willing and stout the spirit had been to 
bear, the flesh had given way. I closed the book with a feeling 
of deep sadness, and rapidly regained my chair, trembling lest 
the bereaved old man should suddenly come in, and read in my 
troubled face some tell-tale indication of the indiscretion which 
I had committed in reading his family records. I had, however, 
fortunately ample time to recover my composure before the 
gentleman made his appearance at last. He was a tall old man, 
but wofully bowed down, clearly less with age than by sorrow 
and suffering. He received me with great urbanity, and kindly 
placed at my disposal all the information which it was in his 
power to give on the subject of my visit to him. When I left 
him, I pondered deeply on the melancholy results of the mad 
ambition of princes", and the wretched love of glory of nations. 
Here was a whole once happy family laid low in the brief space 
of a few years. However, this is a subject which will not bear 
much thinking on, and had therefore better bo let alone. 



188 REMINISCENCES OF 

No matter ! Carnage remains, after all is said and done, 
" God's daughter," as the " gentle Wordsworth " hath it ; and 
the true philosopher and philanthropist must even, however 
reluctantly, admit that it is a necessary, nay, a most beneficent 
institution ; being, indeed, seemingly the only effectual means of 
shielding mankind from the perchance still worse horrors of 
over-population. 

Before starting from Breslau, acting upon the sage advice of 
my friends there, 1 endeavoured to give myself somehow a semi- 
military appearance, to which end I had my gray coat faced with 
green cloth, and procured the loan of a skull-and-cross-bones cap 
from Lieutenant Auerswald, whose acquaintance I had made in 
the famous Golden Goose Hotel. 

Many years before I had known, as a simple captain, the 
General Auerswald who, in 1848, was one of the prominent 
leaders of the Prussian wing in the Frankfort Parliament, and 
who, unhappily, was brutally butchered by an excited mob outside 
the gates of Frankfort on the 18th of September of that year. I 
was in Strasburg at the time ; and from all I could hear of this 
most sad affair, the general, whom I knew to be a gentle man in 
every sense of the term, of courteous demeanour and urbane 
manners, would have been permitted to ride on his way unhurt, 
nay, unmolested, had it not been for the haughty arrogance 
and provoking intemperate conduct of his companion in mis- 
fortune, Prince Felix Lichnowsky, whom I had also known 
many years before, when he was a mere lad of about fourteen 
or fifteen, some seven years or so my junior, I think, and whose 
imperiousness of temper and disposition was even then truly 
Claudian. 

When I first cast eyes upon Lieutenant Auerswald, at the 
Golden Goose table d'hote, something in the appearance of the 
young man reminded me so strongly of the general that I could 
not refrain from asking him whether he was in any way related 
to my old friend. I then learnt that he was the late general's 
son. We soon grew intimate. I have now in my possession 
two photographic groups, in which my counterfeit presentment 
figures, along with his and that of Lieutenant Wittich, a young 
dragoon officer, who had been wounded at Nachod. Auerswald 
had been sent to Breslau to be treated there for a severe ophthalmic 
affection. 

Professor Tellkampf, of the Breslau University, a very old 
friend of mine now, alas ! no more kindly lent me a belt, with 
two revolvers and a dagger stuck in it, to shield my precious life, 
in case of need, from injury, as travelling in Bohemia was not 
very safe just then, of course. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 189 

At Freiberg I chartered a conveyance, not over-comfortable 
to ride in, and rather given to jolting, but drawn by two very 
decent horses, and with a most honest Jehu one Joseph Haynichen 
to drive. 

The first place I came to in Bohemia was Trautenau, a small 
but very wealthy manufacturing town near the Silesian frontier. 
It was here that the Prussian corps under General Bonin had, on 
the 27th of June, sustained the only partial reverse in this 
brilliant seven days' campaign. 

Reports had been sown broadcast over the land how Dr. Roth, 
the Burgomaster of Trautenau, had treacherously concealed a 
large Austrian force in the houses of his city; how these 
Austrians had, after the due and fair surrender of the town, 
fallen suddenly upon the unsuspecting Prussians ; and how the 
vile citizens of both sexes and all ages had poured molten pitch, 
and boiling water, and oil of vitriol, and other unwarlike abomi- 
nations, upon the devoted heads of Benin's unlucky men. 

These reports were wonderfully circumstantial; and the arrest 
of the unhappy burgomaster, whom I happened to meet on his 
dolorous way to Prussia, where he was to be tried for his alleged 
heinous misdeeds, certainly seemed to give them a substantial 
backbone of credibility. Yet upon searching inquiry and diligent 
examination of all the alleged facts and circumstances on the scene 
of action, I soon found that they were, for the most part, the most 
monstrous romances ever concocted. Indeed, the Psalmist, who 
is reported to have said in his haste that all men are liars, might 
conscientiously have repeated the assertion at fullest leisure, had 
he happened to pass through Trautenau at the time. 

The truth of the matter was that Bonin had simply blun- 
dered in his tactical movements, and had allowed Gablentz 
to outwit him. He might have succeeded in accomplishing 
the task allotted to him in the great invasion of the 27th 
of June, as fully as Steinmetz and Augustus of Wiirtemberg 
succeeded in forcing the passes of Nachod and Braunau, had 
he not been over-anxiously intent upon making war with rose- 
water-scented, kid-gloved hands. He lost more than two 
precious hours ere he would decide upon the indispensable 
artillery at tack upon the Chapelmount which commands Trautenau. 
He was reluctant, forsooth, to shock the religious feelings of the 
Bohemians by firing upon the chapel a wretched wooden struc- 
ture that might have been rebuilt at a cost of considerably under 
eighty pounds sterling. The almost inevitable result of this 
fooling, and of Benin's declining the proffered aid of the Guards, 
was that he was driven back in the afternoon upon Goldenols 
the only partial reverse suffered by the Prussians in this war. 



190 REMINISCENCES OF 

Poor Dr. Both was subsequently honourably acquitted of the 
charge so foully brought against him. 

From Trautenau I pursued my melancholy way over Alt- 
Kognitz, Neu-Kognitz, and Burgersdorf where a fierce battle 
had been fought, on the 28th of June, between the Prussian 
gjiards and the tenth Austrian corps under Gablentz, the 
victor over Bonin on the day before a battle which had termi- 
nated in the total rout of the Austrians to Koniginhof (Kralowe 
Dwor, or Queenscourt), which the Prussian guards had stormed 
on the 29th of June. Hence over Horzitz and Milowitch to 
Sadowa and Chlum, and Lippa and Nechanitz, and Prim and 
Problus the several scenes of the fiercest fights waged on the 
momentous 3rd of July from early dawn to dewy eve. 

On my way up to the valley of the Bistritz I found everywhere 
ample marks of the disastrous rout of the Austrians, such as the 
gutted remains of knapsacks, kepis, cartridge-boxes, etc., mostly 
stripped of everything in the shape of iron, steel, brass, or usefully 
available leather about them; also here and there, carcases of horses 
slain and flayed. But the men, at least, who had fallen in the fights 
from the 27th to the 29th June, had all been decently interred, and 
the tumuli that marked the spots of their last resting-places were, 
indeed, calculated to excite a melancholy interest ; but there was 
barely a mark left here and there to inspire horror or disgust. 

Far different was it on Sadowa's sad field although when I 
came there the sun had risen and set seven times since the battle- 
day, horrible signs of awful carnage and utter devastation were 
plentifully sprinkled all over the vast field extending some nine 
English miles in length from north to south, by from six to eight 
English miles in breadth from west to east. Dead horses were 
still abounding above ground ; and dead men also, most of them 
stripped to the skin, or barely with a tattered shirt or the remains 
of a pair of drawers left on the poor slashed and smashed body 
to run a race of corruption with it, were yet lying unburied here 
and there, in ditches and hollows, and out-of-the-way places. I 
counted fifteen of them collected in one spot near Chlum ; eight 
on a heap behind Lippa ; and I shudder even now to think how 
many more by twos and threes and fives elsewhere all over the 
wide area over which the battle had ranged and raged, more 
particularly to the right of the village of Problus and in Prim 
Park. 

There they were, these poor remains of what a few short days 
before had been living strong and valiant men ever ready to meet 
death at the trumpet's call, or at the roll of the drum, though many 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 191 

of them verily without the remotest notion of what the row in 
which they were being butchered could possibly be all about. 

Some had their heads carried off ; others simply their skulls 
dashed in; others, again, were battered by grenades into a hideous 
shapeless mass; some had their legs smashed; from others the life- 
blood had flowed through gaping gashes. It was a brave sight to 
feast one's eyes upon an elevating, an ennobling sight ! If an 
Arthur Schopenhauer had been there to gaze upon this choice 
sample of man's favourite pursuit in life, he might have had a good 
time of it, emphatically ; it would have practically enabled him to 
add a few pregnant chapters to his pessimist philosophy.* 

Yes, there they were lying putrescent on the ground which 
even seemed to deny them a grave ; blackening under the scorch- 
ing rays which a sun almost tropical in the blazing intensity 
of his heat was darting upon their naked flesh and into the 
deepest recesses of the wide-gaping wounds. There they lay, 
infecting the air and enwrapping the land for miles and miles 
around in a poisonous pall. 

No wonder that cholera, in its worst and most virulent form^ 
had made its dread appearance, striking down strong men, in 
robust health apparently, with appalling swiftness, as I had only 
too ample occasion to observe in my visits to Horzitz, and 
Nedelist, and Nechanitz, and Gitschin, and other places on this 
accursed plague-line. 

On starting from Freiberg, I had prudently made provision of 
eatables and a few dozen bottles of wine ; but the claims of the 
sick and wounded appealed so overpoweringly to my better 
nature that I soon dispensed to the last crust and the last bottle 
among the unhappy sufferers. 

Unluckily, there was no possibility, apparently, of replenish- 
ing my store. Neither love nor money could procure a drop of 
wine or beer, or even a loaf of good, wholesome bread. The 

* Many years before, when a student in Berlin, I had attended the 
lectures of this wondrous anatomist of life, who, after half-a-contury 
of almost contumelious neglect, is now universally acknowledged the 
true and legitimate successor of the immense Immanuel of Konigsberg 
and even as a far greater than his predecessor on the throne of specu- 
lative philosophy. Unhappily, he was the very incarnation of theoretical 
and practical universal mistrust and distrust ; and, I confess it to my 
shame, there was something repellent to me in every outer manifestation 
of his inner being, which made me abandon his lectures, and stick to 
the infinitely smaller man and mind that went by the name of Hegel. 
I wish most sincerely now it had been otherwise. Arthur Schopenhauer 
might, perchance, have taught me to think. But, alas ! I was a young 
fool at the time, and the deuce is, I do not know whether I am much 
wiser now. 



192 REMINISCENCES OF 

articles were too scarce just then in these parts, and what there 
was come-at-able was imperatively needed for those with a better 
claim to be attended to than I could urge. 

So we, Joseph Haynichen and I, had mostly to rest satisfied 
with an occasional doubtful crust and a drink of still more 
doubtful water. Indeed, there were plenty of cherries and 
cucumbers to be had, as the army surgeons, with perverse 
blindness to the true cause of the cholera scourge, had placed 
these harmless and refreshing commodities under the strictest 
interdict. 

But then, you see, one cannot be always eating cherries ; and 
cucumbers, without salt and oil and vinegar not to mention 
tomatoes all of them articles next to impossible to procure just 
then and there are not very inviting. So our dietary was rather 
restricted. 

Now it happened also that the water in Prim Park was more 
than brackish. An over-free indulgence there in the luxury of a 
cool drink brought upon me an attack of cholerine. My camping 
for several nights sub Jove, with the scanty shelter of my vehicle, 
was not exactly the thing best calculated to cure me of this most 
inconvenient disorder to speak in the mildest terms of it ; nor 
did it tend much to woo " tired Nature's sweet restorer, balmy 
sleep," to my aching, wakeful lids. 

By this time I had finished my hurried visit to Sadowa, which 
lay almost deserted, the great Urbanec sugar refinery and other 
large industrial establishments being abandoned for the time; 
Chlum, which also had suffered fearfully ; Lippa, Briza, Wschestar, 
Nedelist, Sendraschitz, Maslovied, and Nechanitz, which latter 
I found to be a small, melancholy-looking little town, with a 
church built in the common, most unprepossessing Czecho- 
Slavian style. At the time, however, it did this much good, that 
it accommodated several hundreds of wounded men. The town- 
house also had been turned into a temporary hospital. 

In the park of Przim, or Prim, Castle, the fight had raged 
fiercely. All the farm-buildings were burnt down, as was also 
the large, then well-known distillery of Prim. The castle alone, 
with the chapel, both turned into temporary hospitals, and a few 
barns and small cottages, had escaped comparatively unhurt. 

Wherever I went, and wherever I sent my glances around, 
I saw everywhere the same picture of desolation and misery 
unspeakable. Never mind ! Was it not the second rung on the 
ladder that led Prussia's king to the German Empire's resplendent 
throne ? Life and suffering are, according to Schopenhauer, 
interchangeable terms. All pain is positive, all pleasure merely 
negative, and the resolution into nothingness the Nirwana of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 193 

the Hindoos is the highest and only rational aspiration of man- 
kind. What matters it, then, if death stalk through the world 
so long as the dead lie still and are happy in their annihilation ! 
lying and rotting in cold obstruction, as Shakspeare has it ? 

I made up my mind at last, to Joseph Haynichen's great joy, 
to make tracks in search of fresh fields and pastures new. 

Skalitz was the next place to which I ordered Joseph to 
drive. 

Now the man Haynichen had never been in Bohemia before, 
at least not beyond Nachod and Trautenau; and I was accordingly 
obliged to direct him in all his movements ; this I accomplished 
from old recollections of the different localities, aided by reference 
to an excellent map of the country which I carried with me. 

My charioteer was a very good fellow, and he was willing to 
believe in me to a considerable extent ; but he dearly loved his 
horses, and he was acutely apprehensive lest an untoward en- 
counter with the Austrian patrols should imperil his possession of 
these darling coursers of his. Now the fortresses of Konigingratz 
and Josephstadt were still held by the Austrians in respectable 
force, and our road to Skalitz, Joseph had a notion, lay in sus- 
picious proximity to possible reconnoitring parties from either. 

Besides, Joseph unfortunately had some slight knowledge of 
the Slavo-Czechian tongue, and he was rather given to the vanity 
of showing off his great gifts in this respect. His faith in the 
uprightness of human nature in general, and in Bohemian nature 
in particular, was by no means small. 

When we started at dawn of day from Nechanitz, I gave 
Joseph the minutest directions how to drive on to Kukus, on the 
Elbe, and thence to keep on to the east. Tired out completely 
with three nights' continual sleeplessness, and enfeebled by the 
effects of cholerine, I fell fast asleep in the carriage. 

I was suddenly roused from my peaceful slumber by a violent 
jolt of the vehicle over a large stone in the road, and the sullen 
boom of a by no means distant gun. I started up, rubbed 
my eyes, and saw before me the well-remembered steeples of 
Josephstadt, and found, to my intense annoyance, that my un- 
lucky Jehu, sweetly unconscious of the imminent proximity of 
danger, was just driving me into Jaromirz ! 

It turned out that poor Joseph, on arriving at Kukus, reluctant 
to wake me, had asked and confidingly obeyed the guidance of 
some rascally Bohemian, who had directed him to turn sharp 
to the south, instead of pursuing his course eastward, as I 
had told him to do. The scamp had made him believe that 
the town he saw before him to the south was Skalitz ; chuckling, 
most likely, in fancy over the poor fellow's dismay when he 

o 



194 EEMINISCENCES OF 

should discover that he and his fare and his beloved horses were 
betrayed into the hands of the Austrians. 

My temper, albeit naturally sweet, will occasionally turn 
rather short, and on this particular occasion it was indeed roused 
into red-hot anger. " "What cursed folly is this, you idiot ? " I 
shouted. " What do you mean by driving right into the lion's 
den, you double and triple fool ? Can you not see that we are 
only just a few hundred yards from the suburb of Josephstadt ? " 

The instant Joseph's ear caught the ominous sound of the 
name of the place, he turned the horses sharply round, and 
made them gallop furiously back the way they had come; 
nor did he draw rein until we were safe again at Kukus. He 
was thoroughly frightened ; not that he cared for the danger 
to his life and limbs and liberty, for he was a very brave and 
fearless man, but solely on account of his darling horses. I 
verily believe he would sooner have parted with his life than 
with his team. 

The gun whose boom I had heard had clearly been fired at 
some reconnoitring party of Prussians certainly not at us ; but 
Joseph, once he had caught the notion that the Austrians in 
Josephstadt would be glad of his horses, could not be argued out 
of the conviction that the shot had been intended specially for 
his trap, and that we should soon have all the cannon of the 
fortress thundering after us. His simple trust in the upright- 
ness of Bohemian nature was rudely shaken, and he emphatically 
declared that he would never again believe a Czech, even on his 
most solemn oath. He penitently promised for the remainder of 
our trip to be guided solely by my directions. 

So we went on our way, endeavouring to reach the high-road 
leading to Skalitz ; but as there was no beaten track we had to turn 
off occasionally to seek a more practicable driving path, and so 
it came to pass that, on emerging from a small wood, a truly 
Arcadian scene suddenly met my delighted eyes a charming 
farmhouse, with substantial outbuildings, and a pond in front, 
with a dozen or so ducks swimming on it. 

I sincerely loved animated nature, and I think I may con- 
scientiously affirm that, if it depended anyhow materially on my 
example, I would rather turn vegetarian than encourage the 
slaying of animals for food. But I was ravenously hungry at the 
time, so I mentally addressed the poor swimmers on the pond 
before me somewhat after the fashion of the famous tabbinet- 
maker of Dublin, the late Mr. Eeynolds, whilom M.P. for the 
Irish metropolis. 

When, more than twenty years ago, the late Mr. GL Hamilton, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 195 

then member for Dublin County, was proposing a highly penal 
measure for the suppression of sheep-stealing in Ireland, the 
witty and eccentric member for Dublin City rose to tell the 
House of Commons candidly that if he saw a sheep on the other 
side of the way, and happened to be starving at the time, he 
should tell that sheep,; ".111 take care, my friend, that I live 
longer than you." 

With this bright example in my memory, I also resolved 
mentally to take care to live longer than some, at least, of the 
interesting birds swimming so temptingly before my longing 
eyes. The important initial point, however, was how to get at 
them. If money and good words could accomplish it, I was most 
willing to spare neither. 

So, by way of indispensable preliminary, I shouted and hallooed 
to attract the attention of the inmates of the farm, After a time 
an old woman made her appearance slowly and with obvious 
reluctance. She was a fearful old hag, who looked, indeed, the very 
incarnation of Goethe's Mephistopheles in the guise of Phorcyas. 

She had only one eye, and that one an evil eye ; and only one 
tnsk in the fearful cavern of her mouth, but that one tusk 
seemingly fit to rend and tear whatever might come within its 
reach. She grinned at me a most horrible grin. I, though in- 
voluntarily shuddering at the unwelcome sight, addressed her 
with the utmost courtesy, calling her madam, and offering to pay 
anything in reason for a couple of ducks, and to add a large fee if 
she would graciously consent to roast them for me. Perhaps she 
would not object, I trusted, to add a salad and a bottle of wine or 
beer. 

I might just as well have talked to the ducks, for any sign of 
comprehension on her horrible old face. Her grin simply ex- 
panded into broader malignancy ; and she muttered a few words 
in Czechian, which my faithful Joseph told me were to the effect 
that she did not understand my gibberish. 

Then Joseph took her in hand, diving into the deepest recesses 
of his boasted Slavic lore ; but to no purpose. The monstrous hag 
only continued to grin maliciously, and to shake her ancient head 
violently from side to side, striving to look right through me all 
the time with that basilisk eye of hers. Somehow I got im- 
patient at last; I lost my temper, and began to play, half 
unconsciously, with one of the revolvers in my belt. I must 
candidly confess I cannot say what I might not have done. It 
was rather a mean thing to do to try to frighten an old woman 
with a revolver, and I felt half-ashamed ; but I was so awfully 
"riled." 

O 2 



196 REMINISCENCES OF 

However, the old woman had barely caught sight of the 
revolver when she gave a loud scream, lifted up both hands en- 
treatingly, and cried to me in Saxo-Bohemian German : " Schiessen 
Se ner net, mein juotes Herrche, schiessen Se ner net, I will joa 
jehe un de Herre ruofe." And with this she rushed wildly back 
to the farmhouse. 

A few minutes after a man of decent appearance, well, though 
plainly dressed, came up to me from the house.. He looked much 
troubled and annoyed, but he addressed me with great civility 
notwithstanding. He craved my pardon for his old servant's 
offensive conduct to me, and for his own apparent want of 
courtesy in keeping me waiting so long ; but really he had con- 
gratulated himself upon having, by a lucky chance, escaped 
hitherto all war visitations, and he could not help feeling it 
deeply disappointing and disheartening to find that after all an 
officer of the provisioning department had succeeded in getting 
to his little farm, on requisitioning thoughts intent. 

I hastened to reassure the good man. I earnestly disclaimed 
all and every connection with the invading army ; promised him 
on my honour that no one should know from me or my driver 
aught anent the whereabouts of his farm ; and I politely repeated 
my request that he would kindly consent to sell me a couple of 
his ducks. 

His brow cleared. He stretched out his hand to me, and 
courteously invited me to honour his humble dwelling with my 
august presence. He extended the same hospitable invitation to 
Joseph, whose good graces he cleverly managed to obtain by an 
adroit encomium upon the " splendid appearance " of his horses, 
and a warm offer to have them properly fed and looked after if 
he would kindly consent to unyoke them. 

Less than an hour after a glorious feast of roast duck and 
green peas and asparagus, with a delicious cucumber salad, and 
cherries and fresh butter, was placed before us, and ample 
provision of the best Pilsener beer and Voslauer wine rejoiced 
our hearts. 

Our hospitable host was the son of a German ; and his 
maternal grandmother had also been of the same nationality, sa 
that he had not much Czechian blood in his veins. 

Phorcyas who, by-the-bye, turned out to be a splendid cook 
continued to grin, indeed, but with benevolence now, instead 
of malignancy, and she talked Saxo-Bohemian German by the 
bushel, and declared on her solemn oath that she had never seen 
two men to whom she could take so kindly and gladly as to Joseph 
and to me ; an assurance which made both Joseph and me look 
rather anxious, for fear lest she should take it into her head to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 197 

give more active and impressive expression to her deep affection 
for us. 

Our hospitable host would not hear of our leaving his place 
till next day. So we, nothing loth, stayed over night. 

On our departure in the morning the worthy man firmly 
declined receiving even the smallest sum in payment for our 
noble entertainment. On the contrary, he would insist upon 
replenishing my store of provisions and wine and beer ; and he 
would take no denial. 

Phorcyas was quite indignant when I attempted almost to 
force a thaler upon her nay, she looked so deeply grieved, that I 
forbore insisting upon her acceptance of the gift. I shook hands 
with her instead, and Joseph did the same, which made her quite 
contented. The only party in the house who could be made to 
accept a trifle was the servant who had attended to the horses. 
So we went on our way rejoicing to Skalitz. 

I few days after I reached Nachod. 

The old Wallenstein Castle here had also been turned into a 
temporary hospital, which I, of course, visited, and where I un- 
expectedly saw old Field-Marshal Wrangel. This more than 
octogenarian leader had obstinately insisted upon accompanying 
the army to the field as a volunteer ! And here I found him 
dispensing kind words of sympathy and encouragement, and 
trifling money gifts, to the sick and wounded. He did not see 
me, however, as I forbore from intruding myself upon his notice. 

I had not seen the wonderful old man since many a long year 
back. 

I think it must have been about 1829 that I had the honour of 
a personal introduction to Major-General Baron Wrangel, then 
still in the fullest vigour of manhood, and the beau ideal of a 
cavalry commander. 

It was, if I remember aright, at Baron Altenstein's, then 
Minister of Public Worship, etc., that I first met the general. 

On September 20, 1866, the day of the triumphal entry of the 
Prussian army into Berlin, I saw the old marshal again, high on 
horse, firm in the saddle, riding with all the nerve and skill of an 
accomplished cavalier, and gallantly blowing kisses to every 
pretty girl his lively eyes could espy in his ride along the Linden 
alley. 

A few days after, Professor Tellkampf, a persona gratissima 
with the marshal, took me with him on a visit to the somewhat 
musty queer little house in the Pariser Platz, to present me 
to the ancient warrior, and to the countess, a fine old lady, on the 
shady side of sixty apparently. 



198 - REMINISCENCES OF 

Tellkampf told me that Wrangel prided himself upon his 
retentive memory for faces, and that he would maintain he never 
forgot a man whom he had ever seen, though even only once, 

I smiled ; I was positively convinced he would not recollect 
my face and appearance. 

To my utter astonishment, the old gentleman, after closely 
scrutinising my face a minute or so, exclaimed, with his wonted 
brevity, "I have seen you somewhere before." "Yes, Excellency," 
I stammered, " but it must have been close upon forty years ago." 
" No matter how long ago," replied the marshal, somewhat sharply ; 
"only I have seen you before. But," he added unfeelingly, " how 
old and gray you have grown, to be sure ! " 

Six years after, in January, 1872, the late Count Bernstorff, 
the German Ambassador to the Court of St. James's, to whom 
I had become known in London, made a temporary stay at 
Berlin, where he took up his quarters at the Hotel Eoyal. Here 
the old field-marshal paid the Count a friendly visit ; he came on 
foot. It was one of the coldest winter days, even for Berlin 
something like 4 Fahrenheit ! Yet there the old man was in 
his thin military undress coat, without great coat or wrapper 
about him, and with his spiked helmet tightly fixed on, as 
usual. 

The day after he went on a visit to the Crown Prince, in an 
open carriage, in which he might be seen sitting stiff and grim, 
with the same scanty protection against the cold as the day 
before, yet apparently not the least heeding the cutting, icy 
wind blowing right through him. 

If ever man seemed to be cut out for a centenarian, Field- 
Marshal Wrangel surely was the man. Yet he died ere the 
completion of his ninety-fourth year of a slow fever, which 
suddenly seized on him in autumn, 1877. Still his immense 
vitality kept death at bay for several months. 

I think it was in February, 1878, that a friend of mine wrote 
to me from Berlin, how the last days of the old man had been 
embittered by the vile conduct of a spendthrift nephew of his, 
who had tried his hardest and worst to extort money from his 
aged relative a hopeless task, anyone who knew the marshal 
would have thought. The nephew, however, went so far in his 
efforts to achieve the impossible, that he actually sent his more 
than venerable uncle a challenge to fight him ! So the authorities 
had to lay him by the heels, as a public nuisance, which served 
the scamp right. The marshal left a grandson, who is in the 
diplomatic service* 

Nachod was'so chokeful of invaders of all kinds and classes, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN-. 199 

that my hardest efforts to find shelter in any of the inns of the 
place, or in any private house, were doomed to failure. 

I was told, however, that there was a cotton-spinnery not 
very far from the town, whose foreman was an Englishman, who 
might perhaps find accommodation for me for the night. 

On our way to the spinnery, it so happened that I espied a 
small inn lying a little off the road, and I thought at once it 
would be as well to see whether I might not stay there over 
night, instead of having to claim hospitality of a private 
gentleman. 

Mine host of the inn, who was a full-blooded Czech, declared 
at once, with great alacrity, that he could accommodate me for 
the night, and that he had ample store of provisions and wine 
and beer in the house ; so I told Joseph to unyoke. 

But here I met with unexpected opposition on the part of my 
faithful driver his belief in Bohemian loyalty had been too 
rudely shaken to trust himself with a Czech. The instance, 
which I quoted, of our generous host of a few days back, did not 
apply here, he argued, the said generous host having very little 
Czechian blood in his veins, whilst the man who kept this inn 
was a full-blooded Slave-Czech. The inn was lying off the road ; 
it was a solitary place ; the man had a treacherous look about 
him ; we might both be murdered in our sleep ; he, for one, 
would not let his horses incur the danger of having to change 
masters ; the poor dear beasts would never survive being parted 
from him ; and a lot of nonsense of the same kind. 

He entreated me, with tears in his eyes, not to stay there, but 
let him drive on to the spinnery. But I had made up my mind 
to stay where I was ; and, as my mission was ended now, I at 
last told the obstinate man peremptorily that he might go if 
he insisted upon it, and leave me behind. This, however, the 
faithful fellow would not do. 

He told me it was not his way lo leave one in the lurch who 
had been so kind to him as I had been. Besides, he had pro- 
mised the Herr Professor, who had come with me to Freiberg 
(Tellkampf), to bring me back there safe and sound, and he was 
resolved to do so. Therefore, if I would stop there, why, he must 
even stop along with me, but the whole responsibility would rest 
on my shoulders. 

So he unyoked his horses, and consented even to share the 
ample supper which our host placed before us. Nothing could 
induce him, however, to sleep away from his horses that night. 
He made me quite savage with his dread forebodings of impend- 
ing evil ; but, somehow or other, he succeeded after all in inocu- 
lating me, in a measure at least, with his own apprehensions, 



200 REMINISCENCES OF 

which kept me awake long after I had sought my couch. When 
I fell asleep at last, I had uneasy dreams. Suddenly I awoke 
with a fit of coughing. I fancied I heard a creaking noise outside 
my door. I started up in bed and listened intently; I have 
naturally an acute sense of hearing. There could be no doubt, 
I distinctly heard someone threading his way cautiously along 
the narrow passage leading to my room. I crept with equal 
caution from my bed, and made my way to the door as noise- 
lessly as I could, opened it very gently, and stepped out into the 
passage. 

It might be near two o'clock in the morning ; the sky was 
overcast with clouds, and the night happened to be exceptionally 
dark for the time of year. Still, when I reached the top of the 
staircase leading down to the ground-floor, I distinctly beheld a 
shadowy figure just disappearing through the back door out into 
the courtyard. Somehow it occurred to me that the said shadowy 
figure was that of our Czechian host, who might, for aught I 
knew, be actually on his way to the stables, on murderous thoughts 
intent. 

Poor Joseph! Had his sad presentiments been right, then, 
after all ? And was this treacherous villain of an innkeeper even 
now on his way to execute his dread purpose? No, no! this 
must not be not if I could help it. 

So I resolutely made my way down the staircase and through 
the back door out into the courtyard, never thinking, in my pre- 
cipitation, to take dagger or revolver with me. Yes, there could 
be no mistake there was the intending murderer silently creep- 
ing along to the stable-door, which he swiftly opened, to disappear 
in the stable. I followed cautiously, yet rapidly. Lifting the 
latch of the door, I beheld the murderous wretch crouching like 
a tiger. It was evident that he had heard someone following 
him. I resolved to give him no time for further preparation. I 
threw myself upon him, and grasped him by the throat. At the 
same moment I felt a desperate clutch on my own throat. I 
silently strove to make my grasp tighter. I knew that I might 
need all my breath for the struggle, and that I had none to spare 
for shouting. But the detected would-be assassin was clearly of 
a different way of thinking upon that point fortunately, as it 
turned out. 

" You vile Bohemian hound ! " he groaned painfully, under 
the gripping pressure of my fingers, " would you murder your 
own guest ? " and he made a desperate effort to shake me off. 
Good God ! it was my poor Joseph whose throat I was clutching ! 
" Joseph ! " I gasped out, letting go my hold, " can it be you ? " 

" Gracious heavens ! how come you to be here, sir ? " Joseph 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 201 

shouted, removing his desperate clutch from my throat. For- 
tunately we could not gaze upon each other's faces ; for I am sure 
we must both have looked extremely foolish. 

When we had regained our breath, Joseph explained how the 
dread that I might be in danger had not let him sleep, and how 
he had at last been irresistibly impelled by his growing appre- 
hensions to make his way to my room, to see whether all was right 
and well with me. He had heard me cough, which had allayed 
his fears for my safety, and he had then wended his way back to 
the stables slowly and cautiously. He had soon become aware of 
someone following him, which someone, in his prejudiced frame 
of mind, could of course be no one but our treacherous Boniface 
with the murderous look on his face. 

Thus we had simply each mistaken the other for a bloodthirsty 
assassin, and had thereby lost the best part of our night's rest 
and got a painfully sore throat in the bargain ; and served us 
perfectly right too, for harbouring such uncharitable thoughts of 
one who had given us no reasonable cause whatever for suspecting 
him of evil. I had reason to feel still more ashamed when our 
worthy host handed me the bill in the morning. It was the most 
moderate hotel bill I have ever had to settle in a life of pretty 
extensive travels. 

For the appeasement of my conscience, which upbraided me 
for my cruel suspicion of this honest man, I gave a shining thaler 
to his little son, to which Joseph, who now declared that he had 
never seen a more thoroughly honest and genial face than our 
host's added the munificent gift of a florin, to the lad's intensest 
delight and the father's astonishment. 

After many warm handshakings with our host, who, happily 
unconscious of our evil thoughts of him the night before, ener- 
getically vowed on his part that he had never met with two 
heartier or more pleasant men, we took our departure on our way 
back to Freiberg. 

After this unconscionably long digression, for which I humbly 
crave the indulgent reader's forgiveness upon my old plea that 
I must in these reminiscences be permitted to "write what's 
uppermost, without delay "we will now return to my lecturing 
tour in 1836. 

In due course I reached Strasburg dear old Argentorat, 
where I have, from time to time, lived some of the happiest days 
of my life. 

It was in the latter part of October that I delivered my course 
of lectures here. At the conclusion of the last of the three, some 
of my Alsatian friends Oberlin, Schneegans, Mohl, Wolffle, 



202 REMINISCENCES OF 

Keller, Dolfus, Schmidt, and others came up to shake hands 
with me. Dolfus, of Mulhouse, introduced aTyoung man to me, 
about my own age, by the name and style of Le Vicomte de 
Persigny, who claimed me for an old acquaintance. I recollected 
at once that I had seen the gentleman before, only he was not a 
viscount then, but plain Sieur Fialku 

It was in the early part of 1833, 1 think, when I met, at one 
of the gatherings of the " discontents," a young non-commissioned 
French cavalry officer. If I remember aright, he was a kind of 
quartermaster. There was nothing striking about him. He 
seemed to me to be rather given to vapouring. He talked very 
exaltedly about what might be done to rid France of the July 
Government. I retain an impression somehow on my mind that 
the young sergeant was listened to rather impatiently, and 
obviously chiefly because of his connection with the army, which 
the Eepublicans at the time ardently wished to conciliate and 
bring round to their camp. Some seven or eight months before 
this, the Duke of Eeichstadt had died, and the pure Eepublicans, 
whilst sincerely pitying the unhappy young man, who it was 
thought had been hurried into a premature grave for high 
reasons of State, rejoiced that the dangerous Napoleon legend 
had suffered this severe blow and discouragement. And here 
was this Sergeant Fialin talking about the son of Hortense ready 
to step forward to snatch from the "mud and mire through 
which Louis Philippe was dragging it " the glorieuse flamme 
tricolore, and exalt it once more on high. 

"Viscount Persigny," which I was told afterwards was a 
title that had being lying dormant in the Sieur Fialin's family 
for three hundred years, graciously expressed to me the very 
great pleasure which my lecture had given him more particu- 
larly the crowning yEschylean peroration and his ardent desire 
to become more intimately acquainted with me, and to, show his 
cordial appreciation of my merit in a practical shape, which he 
somewhat mysteriously hinted might happen to be the case very 
soon. 

Among the many anecdotes told at the time of the late Duke 
of Eeichstadt there was one which more particularly took the 
popular fancy. It was related how the Emperor j Francis had 
said to his grandson, half jocularly, half in earnest, "Ah, my boy, 
if you were to appear now suddenly on the bridge at Strasburg, 
wouldn't it make Louis Philippe rather uncomfortable ? " Ay, 
so it would, your Majesty," was said to have been young 
Napoleon's reply ; " but, maybe, it would make many others feel 
more uncomfortable still ! " 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 203 

And, no doubt, so it would have made many others feel most 
uncomfortable, more particularly the astute Francis himself. In 
those days there was an ominous tempest-bearing cloud hanging 
over Europe like unto a gigantic water-bladder, needing but the 
prick or slash of a lucky adventurer's sword to pour down 
Metternich's deluge so many years sooner. 

Continental Europe had somehow fallen back into the same 
deplorable state in which the great French revolution had found 
her at the end of the eighteenth century. Eussia had betrayed 
her weakness in her last Turkish war, when she had been saved 
from deepest humiliation only by the skilful diplomacy of the 
Prussian Envoy at Constantinople. Austria was rotten to the 
core. The Peninsula was a factor that might be counted in favour 
of a France militant against the effete European monarchism of 
that period, and, to tell the unvarnished truth, of this present 
time too. Belgium would have gone along with France. The 
people everywhere were discontented. The wretched congresses 
of Aix-la-Chapelle, Verona, and Laybach had done their work. 
The Brummagen German Confederation was split into antagonistic 
sections, and the chances were that the South would be found on 
the side of France. The Prussians, disappointed and deceived 
by their King, would have marched into the field half-hearted ; 
and the military system created by Scharnhorst and Gneisenau 
had outlived its own vital principle (as glaringly shown by the 
mobilisation of 1832). In Italy, France might count upon the 
Sub-Alpine kingdom and a general rising of the people. England 
was in the throes of the Eeform Bill. 

In 1836 matters remained much in the same condition, and 
it needed no great vaticinatory acumen to foresee that an 
Imperialist revolution in France might be expected to lay the 
Continent of Europe, at least for a time, at the feet of a new 
Frank Empire. 

The son of Hortense, after the death of the Duke of Keich- 
stadt, the inheritor of the Buonaparte claim, was watching from 
Arenenberg the course of events, and hatching plots against the 
Government of July in France. 

During my stay in Algiers, and my long illness and con- 
valescence at Toulon, I had troubled but little about political 
afiairs. The great kindness of the Duke of Orleans to me had, 
in a great measure at least, taken the sting out of my hostility to 
his father's rule, changing my former active antagonism into a 
very neutral-tinted mild sort of platonic dislike. Sergeant Fialin 
and his tall talk had thus come to fade from my memory at the 
time when I met him again at Strasburg. I was told subse- 
quently that soon after my leaving for Algiers he had been 



204 REMINISCENCES OF 

expelled the military service for some breach of discipline ; after 
which he had temporarily joined the St. Simonians, and finally 
donned the Buonapartist livery. I heard something about a 
Buonapartist journal started by him, L' Occident Frangais, which 
had soon come to grief, but had procured him a favourable intro- 
duction to the notice of the family, more particularly of the then 
nominal chief of it Louis Napoleon who, with his innate 
fatalism, had chosen to see something most remarkable in the 
very simple coincidence of himself and Fialin being born in the 
same year (1808). 

On the conclusion of my course of lectures, I made ready to 
return to Lyons. I accepted, however, an invitation to visit 
Hagenau before my final departure. My friend Oberlin promised 
to drive me over in his trap on the 30th of October, which, in 
1836, fell on a Sunday. On Saturday afternoon I went to take 
leave of Dolfus and Keller, who were then occupying apartments 
in the Grand' Eue, in the very house, I was told, where Eouget 
de 1'Isle had first sung his world-famed " Marseillaise." In those 
times ceremony was not the order of the day with our set far 
from it indeed ; so I opened the outer door without knocking, 
and turned the handle of the inner door after a single preliminary 
rap of intimation. I found some ten gentlemen standing in a 
semicircle round a personage wrapped in a large carlonaro cloak, 
who was addressing them in French with a slight Helveto- Alsatian 
accent. He stopped short when I entered, and several of the 
gentlemen looked round with evident impatience and annoyance. 
I clearly saw that I was an unexpected and unwelcome intruder, 
so I withdrew at once with a few hurried words of apology. I 
had had time, however, to catch a glimpse of the face of the 
personage in the cloak: it was a rather heavy-looking semi- 
Dutch face. 

I was then staying in the Euprechtsau, with young Schiitzen- 
berger, a medical student of the Strasburg Faculty one of the 
most intensely French Alsatians I have ever known, and Eepub- 
lican to the backbone. He had been laid up for the last week 
with a sprained ankle, and was going along with me to Hagenau. 

Oberlin had promised to bring his trap round at noon ; but, 
to our great surprise, he made his appearance considerably earlier 
in the morning. Hs looked pale and dejected. He told us, to 
our intensest amazement but sincerest satisfaction though 
evidently to his own acutest grief that a most promising Im- 
perialist Eestoration movement had just been nipped in the bud 
after a- brilliantly successful initiation. The person in the car- 
lonaro cloak, whom I had so suddenly and unexpectedly come 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN 205 

upon the evening before, was no other than Prince Charles Louis 
Napoleon, who had quietly come over from Switzerland to take 
possession of his t( faithful city" of Strasburg, including citadel, 
garrison, and all. He had made a splendid debut at the Austerlitz 
barracks, where Colonel Vaudry had presented him with the 
fourth artillery regiment ; he had then proceeded, it would appear, 
to arrest the Governor of Strasburg, General Voirol, the same 
who had been interimistic Governor of Algiers in ray time, and to 
try the magic of the Napoleon legend npon the forty-sixth regi- 
ment of infantry at the Finkmatten barracks. Here he had 
lamentably failed, however, officers and men alike having received 
with indignant derision and contempt his cool summons to break 
their oath to the July Government and pass over to him. M. Fialin 
(de Persigny) had prepared this extraordinary attempt, which in 
such hands as his and his employer's was necessarily foredoomed 
to fail ; but, given a Morny, a St. Arnaud, a Maupas, a Walewski, 
a Magnan, and the rest of the Decembrists of a later period, with 
the millions of the Bank of France to back them, what might 
have been the fate of France, of Europe, of freedom, and of the 
truest and dearest interests of humanity? From what I had 
occasion to learn after, the plot was much more dangerous than 
it looked after its failure. Its ramifications extended all over 
Strasburg and Muhlhausen, even to Metz. But the secret was 
well kept. 

It was in summer, 1840, I was with Dr. Curie, the French 
homoeopathic physician of Lower Brook Street, Grosvenor 
Square, attending to his correspondence, French and English, 
to his homoeopathic pharmacy and dispensary, and to his humbler 
patients. One day a gentleman called upon the doctor, whom I 
recognised at once as the Prince Louis Napoleon I had seen 
nearly four years before at Strasburg. A short time after he 
had left, Mr. Leaf came in, the wealthy merchant who had just 
then promised to endow a homoeopathic hospital in London. I 
had returned to the doctor's sanctum, where I was writing a 
letter to Dr. Croserio, a homoeopathic physician then in large 
practice in Paris. The doctor told Leaf, jocularly, that he had 
just had Prince Louis Napoleon's promise to create a Chair of 
Homoeopathy at the medical faculties in France, as soon as he 
should come to his own. We had a hearty laugh over this. 

A very few days after, I dined with Mr. Emmanuel Bernoulli,* 

* He was a distinguished member of the celebrated Swiss family 
of that name, which has supplied the world with so many eminent men 
in mathematics, science, philosophy, and commerce. One of them has 
linked his fame indissolubly with the differential calculus; one was 



206 REMINISCENCES OF 

at Mrs. Saunders' boarding-house in Golden Square. Among 
the guests was M. Fialin (de Persigny), who did me the dis- 
tinguished honour to address a few polite phrases of recognition 
to me, expressive of the great pleasure he felt in meeting me 
again, and of his sincere desire to render me every service in his 
power. 

" Clever fellow, the viscount," said M. Bernoulli to me after- 
wards, in his dry, sarcastic way; "they say that Louis Philippe 
fancies he has hired him to act as a spy upon Louis Napoleon, 
and that the Prince and he jointly concoct the reports for which 
the French embassy pays handsomely. It is one of his many 
ways of raising the wind. I know of no man more fertile in 
resources in that line." 

And fertile in resources in that line he most -undoubtedly was. 
With Solari, Eapalli, and a few others, and with Beaumont Smith 
for clieville ouvriere, he was at that very time actually working 
the well-known Exchequer Bills fraud, which sent poor Smith to 
Botany Bay, and left some little shade of suspicion attaching 
even to Lord Monteagle, the then Comptroller of the Exchequer. 
It was this scheme that supplied the means for the tame eagle 
expedition to Boulogne. 

" Lord, we know what we are, but know not what we may be," 
says distraught Ophelia. Many years after, I met M. Fialin 
once more. He was a duke then, and a high and mighty per- 
sonage ; and I well, I happened to be out of luck and out of 
sorts at the time, and I did not feel quite so repel! ently proud 
as I had in former days ; so I foolishly thought that the great 
man might do something for me. Memory, however, as I have 
said before, is a capricious faculty. Monseigneur had completely 
forgotten to remember me. 

Director of the Academy of Sciences of St. Petersburg ; another held 
the same exalted position at the Berlin Academy of Sciences. Mr. 
Emmanuel was a son of the latter. In 1840 and 1841 I lived in the 
family of Emmanuel's sister, then a widow who had been married to 
a cousin-german a most sprightly and highly intellectual lady, mother 
of three sons Eugene, Henry, and Adolphus all three splendid 
linguists, sound, and clever commercial men, and sterling good fellows 
withal, who were like unfco brothers to me. Emmanuel has long, long 
since been gathered to his great forbears j so has his brilliant sister, 
whose bright intellect was clouded, alas ! in the last years of her life. 
Adolphus went to Trieste, Eugene and Henry established a great house 
of commerce in London, as I heard years after. However, they faded 
out of my life, as hundreds of my most intimate friends have done in 
the course of my long wandering career. If they are spared still, and 
should accidentally read these lines, their old friend sends them his 
most hearty greeting. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 207 

It is on January 13th, 1882 on the very anniversary of his 
death just three years ago that I am penning this part of my 
reminiscences. He died at Nice, in his sixty-fourth year. Of 
course, he died a'saint, attended to the last by two Jesuit fathers, 
who sent his soul straight on its road to heaven. 

It was in 1867 : I was once again in Paris. It was the year of 
the second great Exhibition in the French capital. My old and 
most valued friend, Peter Lund Simmonds, had entrusted me 
with the arrangement, management, and care of some of the 
Colonial sections, for which he himself acted as Assistant-Com- 
missioner, notably the Cape of Good Hope and the Yictoria 
department. The latter, more especially, was highly interesting. 
There was, Australian wool in every stage, from the shearing of 
the sheep to the manufactured shawl. Another valued friend of 
mine, Tom Cutler, a clever architect, who, I am happy to say, is 
still considerably to the fore, had, with surpassing ingenuity and 
ability, constructed with a number of wool-bags, a lot of variously 
twisted iron rods, and some eighty yards of wide wire, a trophy 
entrance gate to the Yictoria department, which formed the 
admiration ofall beholders. 

There was a geological collection, which I had taken great 
pains to classify and arrange properly. Professor Maskelyne, of 
the British Museum, had entrusted to me also a case of Australian 
gems, in which I took great pride. 

I have always held that what a man has to do that is worth 
doing he should strive to do to the best of his capacity ; and upon 
this principle I have endeavoured to act through the working 
part of my career. It is truly from no vain desire to blow my 
own trumpet that I venture to say it here ; but I have been a 
hard worker ever since I was thrown upon my own resources ; 
and I can, inter alias res, conscientiously affirm that I have penned 
at least one hundred respectable volumes in German, English, 
and French. They may not be worth much, but at least they 
represent so much honest hard work of brain and hand. 

Yet among my brother Savages there was for years a belief 
that I was the idlest idler, who never did any work. 

So when, in the Exhibition year, a member of the Club, or 
anyone of a wider circle of friends, .came to Paris, it was the 
custom to show him as the greatest of all curiosities at the 
Exhibition Palace the old Bohemian actually doing work ! 

And indeed I was at work early and late so early, in fact, as 
a rule, that I was generally the first arrival in my own depart- 
ment, although I lived far away from the Champ de Mars, and, 



208 EEMINISCENCES OF 

most mornings at least, had to walk the whole distance, One 
morning I came there exceptionally early, when there were but 
few people in the building. I saw two gentlemen walk up to my 
Victoria department. One was the Emperor Napoleon III., the 
other, on whose arm he leaned heavily, General Fleury. It was 
an incognito visit altogether, and there was evidently some surprise 
felt at my presence there. Of course I made no sign whatever 
that I knew my early visitors. The Emperor looked sea-green; 
it was from intense suffering, I knew. He evidently took a real 
interest in all he saw. He asked me an absolute crowd of 
questions about the Australian colonies and their productions. 
He admired my friend Cutler's wool-trophy, and wished to know 
very particularly how the wool was scoured. 

He talked about the Australian wines like a man who knew 
his subject. He took an eager interest in a pair of Australian 
riding-boots intended for him, and a pair of most dainty ladies' 
boots made expressly as a present to the Empress Eugenie. The 
geological collection and the Australian gem-case attracted his 
special attention. I respected his incognito throughout absolutely. 
Just on the point of leaving, as other exhibitors were gradually 
coming in, he asked me suddenly and abruptly whether he had 
not seen me before ; and I well I, like a ninny, murmured some- 
thing about it not being unlikely, and let him depart with a 
polite bow to receive the admiring encomiums of the sergent de 
ville, who had been keeping close watch upon us all the time, 
upon my perfect bearing during this interview with his Imperial 
Majesty. 

There is a tide very occasionally there are several tides in 
the affairs of man ; well, I never had enough of that most uncom- 
mon of all senses Common Sense to take any of my tides at a 
flood. So here I am, standing midway between the septua and 
the octo in the genarian line of life, writing these reminiscences 
of mine ; taxing my memory, cudgelling my brains, and working 
my once nimble but now slightly stiffening fingers, "when, mayhap, 

a little rest might but, no matter it may be, after all, just as 

well to finish in harness. 

I was in Lyons about the middle of November, 1836. My 
friend Peyrade was awaiting my return with impatience. It so 
chanced that he had been talking about me to M. Des Guidi, the 
introducer of homoeopathy in France, and the leading homoeo- 
pathic physician of Lyons, who had made him an offer to engage 
my services upon salary and fees, on condition that I should 
abjure the " damnable heresies and errors " of the old allopathic 
school, and take toto animo, totd mente, to the new faith as in the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 209 

" divine " Samuel for it was ever in this gaise that Dr. Des 
Guidi would reverentially speak of the " infinitesimally small " 
posologist. 

Now, considering the very exiguous and ever-growing-less 
remnant of the last lingering ray of my always somewhat shaky 
faith in the venerable old school, it was not a very violent wrench 
for me to try Hahnemann. The exceeding simplicity of the 
principle underlying his new system, which apparently might be 
laid without risk of crowding in the very smallest Barcelona 
shell, and the self-evident harmlessness, at least, of his infinitesimal 
medication, seemed to me so much the easier to swallow. 

In those days I was up to anything, from pitch-and-toss to 
manslaughter. I had just come fresh from a little game of 
the former with the facts of history, so I thought I might take 
my chance of indulging with impunity in the latter at least, in 
the way of omission. 

The offer made to me seemed fair. The salary, certainly, 
looked rather limited, but the fees promised to make ample 
amends for its comparative smallness. Well, with my innate 
impulsiveness, I closed with M. Des Guidi's proposal. 

Count Sebastian Cajetan Des Guidi, M.D., late Professor of 
Mathematics, was a Neapolitan by birth. He descended from an 
ancient family, whose first Italian progenitor had originally, in 
the tenth century, come into Lombardy with the German Emperor 
Otto the Great. 

Sebastian and his elder brother, Count Philipp, had in their 
earliest manhood eagerly and enthusiastically espoused the 
glorious doctrines of the glorious revolution of 1789, and they 
had, of course, been among the foremost and boldest supporters 
of the Parthenopeian Republic, doomed, alas ! to succumb but 
too soon to the militant Cardinal Ruffo, with his rabble of banditti, 
lazzaroni, cut-throats, and galley-slaves, under warrant and com- 
mission of the super-excellent Bourbon Ferdinand IV., King of 
the Two Sicilies, and under the high and mighty protection of 
England, Russia, and the Porte. Verily, verily ! so-called con- 
siderations of high policy will occasionally make us draw in the 
same team with wondrously strange yoke-fellows. 

The two brothers Des Guidi sought and found refuge and 
asylum in France, where they had to rough it for a time, how- 
ever, until their solid attainments and brilliant talents obtained 
high university positions for both of them, as Professors of 
Mathematics. Count Sebastian Des Guidi was subsequently, 
under the Empire, made Inspector of the Lyons Academy. When 
past forty-five years of age, he took it suddenly into his head to 

P 



210 REMINISCENCES OF 

study medicine, and before lie had attained fifty he was M.D., and 
in full and lucrative practice in Lyons. Upon a visit to Naples, 
about 1829, he made the acquaintance of a leading homoeopathisb 
there, who gained him over to Hahnemann's new system, which 
he was the first to introduce into France. 

In his homoeopathic practice M. Des Guidi was eminently suc- 
cessful, and precious were the tokens of acknowledgment bestowed 
upon him by his enthusiastic patients. Among other things, a 
large gold medal was struck in his honour, and in commemora- 
tion of the introduction of homoeopathy in France, bearing on 
the obverse his bay-wreathed head, with " The grateful Healed to 
the wondrous Healer" as exergue around. The old post ergo 
propter, you see, holds good to the present day. 

When I came first to Count Des Guidi, he was on the shady 
side of sixty a tall, handsome man, with antique head and classic 
face ; a high-bred gentleman ; but, like most apostles and martyrs 
of "liberty and fraternity," slightly given to be self-assertive, 
dogmatic, and dictatorial, and apt to resent opposition. When 
we became better acquainted he would tell me the harrowing tale 
of the short-lived Parthenopeian Eepublic, and of its bloody 
overthrow by " Michael Pezza (Fra Diavolo), Gertano Mammone, 
and the third and worst bandit of the trio Ruffo the Cardinal." 

He would tell me how the noble Caraccioli, and some of the 
purest patriots with him, had been treacherously murdered in the 
very teeth of the capitulation promising them life and liberty, afe 
least, safe. 

It was truly terrific to behold him, risen to his full height in 
the fierce excitement of his reminiscences, calling down the 
malediction of Heaven upon the very name and memory of every 
actor, aider, and abettor in the horrible drama, notably Nelson , 
whom he frantically denounced as Caraccioli's conscious mur- 
derer. Of Sir William Hamilton he spoke with withering con- 
tempt ; of Lady Hamilton as " une femelle abandonnee, une 
Messaline de bas etage, au-dessous de la colere d'un honnete 
homme." 

Whenever I essayed to stem the impetuous torrent of his 
awful imprecations upon the memory of the greatest English 
admiral except Blake he would try to shut me up in the most 
peremptory manner, telling me bluntly that I was too young 
to venture to dispute with him upon facts and events in which 
he himself had had an active part, whereas I could not pos- 
sibly know anything of or about them. Occasionally we had 
a fierce wordy fight over it for am I not also something of 
an apostle and martyr of liberty, with a dash of dogmatism in 
my composition? We then would not exchange a word for 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 211 

two or even three days, after which he would condescend at last 
to offer a sort of semi-apology, not for his sentiments and opinions, 
but for the somewhat crude and rude way in which he had given 
vent and expression to them. 

Such were our historic and political dissensions. In matters 
of science and medical practice it was, if possible, occasionally 
still hotter and worse. 

M. Des Guidi had, as he often told me, painfully experienced 
in his own practice the helplessness of the old system in all 
serious cases, so that he had come to look upon it with utter 
disdain as the merest haphazard empiricism, thinly veiled in the 
shallowest pretence of science. The same as in ancient Eome 
two augurs could not meet without interchanging a quiet chuckle 
at the folly of the people believing in them, so he used to say he 
wondered how two physicians could meet in consultation without 
laughing outright. Yet when this clever, nay brilliant, man took 
to the doctrine of homoeopathy, he swallowed Hahnemann whole- 
infinitesimals, psora and antipsorics, and all. He made a clean 
gulp of the lot, and he wanted me to follow his example, which 
for the life of me I could not bring myself to do. I was nob 
a mere child at the time, but a man with a deal of practical 
experience; and I had enjoyed the teachings of the highest 
leaders in the profession and the profoundest scientists. I was 
quite willing to admit the glaring absurdities and the lamentable 
insufficiencies and defects of the old school. Sad experience 
had opened my eyes rather wide upon these points, and I had 
learnt to appreciate the supreme vis medicatrix natures, but 
my chief now wished to force upon me a blind and absolute 
faith in a monstrous pretension. Practically I did not mind, 
but theoretically I could not and would not knock under. I 
felt myself in this respect somehow in the same position as 
Danton, in his relation to the He'bertists. "Nous n'avons pas 
voulu ane*antir la superstition pour etablir 1'athe'isme," cried the 
great tribune when driven to his intrenchments by the frenetic 
ravings of Hebert and Chaumette and their following of maniacs. 
So I, in modifying, or moderating, my belief in the soundness of 
the doctrines taught by the true Gamaliels at whose feet I had 
been privileged to sit, did not mean to swallow and swear by the 
vagaries of a Samuel Hahnemann : I held the bleeding, blistering 
and drenching of the old school in abhorrence, but I was not 
willed to attribute to "sugar globules" the marvellous curative 
and sanative powers- which my chief peremptorily claimed for 
them. 

I say sugar globules, and I say it deliberately. In my humble 

'p 2 



212 UENINISCENCES OF 

opinion it is barely possible to exaggerate the almost incredible 
absurdity of Hahnemann's theory of the supreme efficacy of 
infinitesimal doses, with the stupendously subtle recondite basis 
upon which it is made to rest, the continuous evolution, to wit, 
of latent curative power from medical agents by successive 
processes of trituration and dilution. 

We supplied a number of our most favoured patients, and 
also many apothecaries in the centre and south of France, 
with "homoeopathic pharmacies;" and we used a great many 
globules in our own practice. M. Des Guidi liked to have his 
remedial agents prepared fresh at short intervals ; at least 
a certain number of them. I prepared them conscientiously, 
according to his instructions and directions. He differed 
in this from Hahnemann, that he did not believe in the 
superior efficacy of protracted trituration. I had to rub to- 
gether in a mortar for about fifteen minutes one grain of the 
agent and ninety-nine grains of milk-sugar. Every grain of 
this powder contained exactly the one-hundredth of a grain 
of the agent. This was the first attenuation, or, as M. Des Guidi 
called it, the first evolution. One grain of this had now to be 
mixed again with ninety-nine grains of milk-sugar. The result- 
ing powder the second attenuation containing accordingly the 
one ten-thousandth part of a grain of the agent. One grain of 
this, again, mixed in the same way with ninety-nine grains of milk- 
sugar, gave the third attenuation, or the first power (I.), or the 
first subtilisation, to speak with M. Des Guidi. One grain of this 
contained accordingly the one-millionth part of a grain of the 
agent. One grain of this treated in the same fashion with ninety- 
nine grains of milk-sugar, gave the fourth attenuation, with tfee 
one hundred-millionth part of the agent in it. 

By this time the most insoluble substance has become soluble 
in water, at least to the keenest perception of the senses. So 
one grain of the fourth attenuation was dissolved simply in 
water in a small phial, with the 100-minims mark scratched on it. 
The phial was shaken a few minutes, and the contents were 
simply drained out, leaving always about a drop, or minim, 
adhering to the inside of the glass. This operation was repeated 
twenty-five times. The twenty-sixth time spirit of wine was 
substituted for the water. This thirtieth attenuation, or tenth 
power (X.) was the potent liquid the quintessence with which 
we imbibed our "nonpareil" sugar globules, dispensed to our 
patients at the rate of one to four, crushed on a bit of paper, and 
mixed with a little milk-sugar, with directions to dissolve in 
water, and take a teaspoonful at a time ! You see, we acted upon 
the assumption of the infinite divisibility of matter. We re- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 21 

pudiated the ultimate atomic notion altogether. "Divide et 
impera " was our motto. This tenth power X. on the label of 
the bottle contained the one-decillionth part of a grain of the 
agent ! which, of course, was by so much more powerful than the 
original substance!! To give a faint notion of the stupendous 
conception underlying this assumption, one has only to reflect 
upon the mass of admixture required were the whole process for 
the production of the tenth power to be performed in one single 
operation. 

The fifth attenuation, or first solution in water, would, in that 
case, require some 22,900 cubic feet of water, at a rough calcu- 
lation. 

Taking this globe of ours to measure, roughly calculated, in 
round figurgg 36,500 trillions of cubic feet = 16,000 quadrillions 
of troy grains or minims, the fifteenth attenuation, or fifth power, 
would accordingly exhaust sixty-two and a half times the bulk of 
our small terrestrial globe. 

Taking the bulk of the whole solar system at a rough calcula- 
tion as 1,410,000 times the bulk of the earth, the eighteenth 
attenuation, or sixth power, would swallow up close upon forty- 
four and a third solar systems ! whilst the thirtieth attenuation, 
or tenth power, would require some forty-four and a third 
quadrillions of our solar system, which might make a respectable 
inroad even upon the bulk of the five thousand stars, down to 
the sixth magnitude, visible to the naked eye. 

All our "remedial agents" were not quite so potent. We 
used camphor, for instance, in the first power, musk in the fourth 
attenuation,* aconite in the second power, pulsatilla in the fourth 
power, etc. But we mostly carried oar attenuations to the 
thirtieth. 

"Well, one would think thirty attenuations a handsome enough 
allowance in all conscience. 

In 1853 or 1854, when I was engaged upon the London Hoirueo- 
pathic Times, I found in a foreign homoeopathic periodical a 
deliberate statement by one Dr. Von Bonighausen that he carried 
his attenuations to the TWO THOUSANDTH ! ! ! and that he had used 
medicines in this blessed two-thousandth attenuation with sltvr- 
prising success in the treatment of the little ailments of little 
birds. Of course, the man was a wag. It amused me to put this 
reductio ad alsurdum into the Homoeopathic Times. I was afraid 

* This still retained a faint odour of musk. M. Des Guidi professed 
to perceive this odour even in the fifth attenuation. I have a keen 
sense of smell, and 1 tried hard, but 1 failed to detect the remotest 
trace of it. 



214 REMINISCENCES OF 

my little joke would get me into trouble. Not a bit of it. The 
homoeopathic readers of the paper took it in like a lump of fresh 
butter. I had many anxious inquiries whether this wonderful 
high attenuation might not be prepared by a shorter process than 
that recommended by Hahnemann. Well, well! Mundus vult 
decipi why should it not have its will ? 

It is truly surprising how strangely defective the faculty of 
calculation and computation is even in some very clever people 
occasionally. 

M. Des Guidi had been professor of transcendental mathe- 
matics, yet when I invited his attention to the transcendental 
stretch of Samuel Hahnemanu's dilution-theory, as I have just 
been essaying here to work it out in the rough, it took a very 
long time ere he could see it at all. When the monstrosity of 
the thing began to dawn upon him at last, he was fain to admit 
that it seemed incredibly incomprehensible ; but he declined to 
enter into any ulterior discussion of the question with me, 
somewhat after the fashion of the Dominican de Yio (Cardinal 
Cajetan, i.e., of Gaeta), who, when Luther had nailed him upon 
Pope Clement VI.'s extravagant anent indulgences in connection 
with Christ's merit, would have no more to say to the bold monk. 

It is one of my foibles to indulge in quaint calculations. 
" Zahlen beweisen," says an old German axiom numbers demon- 
strate. They may, in a certain sense, be said to link the finite to 
the infinite, the limited and measurable to the unbounded and 
immense. 

Thus, for instance, Bonighausen's two-thousandth dilution 
would run us up rather high in the immensity of immensities 
of stars visible and telescopic. 

If people would only reflect and calculate before propounding 
as facts hastily conceived crude notions of their own, how many 
random assertions they might avoid ! 

To give a few instances by way of illustration. Some eighteen 
years ago a distinguished lady novelist made a dishonest trustee 
walk off with half a million pounds sterling in gold and silver in 
a carpet-bag ! Had the half-million been altogether in gold, the 
weight would have come to 3 tons 18 cwt. 

Even with regard to the weight of bank-notes the notions of 
many people are remarkably hazy. My late friend Watkins, the 
eminent specialist in gout, rheumatism, and neuralgic affections, 
once told a Mr. Homer, whom he was at the time successfully 
treating for a most severe affection of the eyes, that he could 
easily carry the National Debt of England in five-pound notes on 
his back ! There was a whole roomful of patients present, includ- 
ing myself, who had then one of my periodical fits of gout. Yet 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 215 

Horner, a man of hard facts and dry figures, was the only one 
who laughed at the statement ; and even he thought that ten 
horses would suffice to do the job, and was quite amazed when I 
chimed in, telling the audience that seven hundred and eighty 
millions sterling, the then approximative amount of the English 
National Debt, would weigh upwards of 179 tons, at a rough 
guess. One note = 18 grs. troy. 

Many years ago there was a London surgeon in rather exten- 
sive practice, and apparently pretty well-to-do in the world. He 
was a highly respectable man. After the worry and fatigue of a 
long day's work, he would occasionally meet a few friends in a 
respectable coffee-room, to have a social chat. One of these 
friends was a clerk in the Bank of England unclaimed dividends 
department, who would sometimes tell strange tales of people 
who left their dividends unclaimed for years and years. Among 
others he mentioned a Miss Slack, of Northampton, whose stock 
then amounted to 8,000 with the dividends, that had not been 
claimed for nine years. 

Well, Mr. Fletcher that was the name of the surgeon- 
thought it was a great pity that so much good money should be 
left untouched, perhaps to be handed in the end to her Majesty's 
Commissioners for the Reduction of the National Debt. So he 
set his wits to work. He deceived a young solicitor, of the name 
of Barber, into unconscious accompliceship, manufactured 
moyennant finance a pseudo Miss Slack, and a few hard-swear- 
ing witnesses to identify the party , and he succeeded with sur- 
prising facility in getting the 8,000 transferred to him. He was 
a very clever man, you see so clever, indeed, that, to guard 
against the remotest chance of an unlucky contretemps, he would 
not take notes in payment, but asked for 8,000 in gold some- 
thing like 140 Ibs. weight ! which, of course, created some amaze- 
ment and a deal of amusement. Just at this precise time one of 
the clerks had to pass into an adjoining office, where he told the 
tale of the party who wished to carry away eight thousand 
sovereigns in his pockets. A gentleman present there on busi- 
ness happened to know Miss Slack, of Northampton, a paraly tical 
lady, who had not left her room for years. So, to use an expres- 
sive vulgarism, they soon smelt a rat ; the gaff was blown, and 
clever Mr. Fletcher, instead of carrying off the money, was carried 
off himself to jail. 

I might multiply these illustrative instances, but I know I 
mustn't. I have a .lot of them at hand, and I am open to an 
arrangement should an enterprising publisher wish to go in for 
my " Fancy Flights over the Fairy Field of Figures." There is a 
catching title for you ! 



216 REMINISCENCES OF 

Among M. Des Guidi's patients and friends was a M. De Bel- 
lange, a wealthy gentleman, whose son was studying medicine at 
Montpellier. The father, who ardently wished the son to take to 
homoeopathy, sent him to us in vacation. He was a young fellow 
with a remarkably clear head, full of fun and frolic and mischief. 
He had not a grain of belief in Hahnemann and his system, but 
to please his father he " shammed belief." M. Des Guidi once 
entrusted to him the preparation of our remedies, and he re- 
plenished our store of spirit of wine essences. The young scamp 
coolly told me afterwards, when home again for his vacation, 
that he had filled the whole lot of phials out of the same pure 
spirit of wine jar ! He laughed outright at my long face. He 
had something better to do, he said, than take to mortar and 
pestle and to bottle-shaking. He told me I knew just as well as 
he did that it could not make the slightest difference in the 
efficacy of the globules whether they were moistened with our 
laboriously prepared essences or with the pure spirit which I 
was forced to admit. I saw it was worse than useless to trouble 
about the affair. So I quietly set to preparing fresh essences in 
the orthodox fashion. Only meanwhile we had for more than two 
months been treating our patients with pure esprit de Bellange, 
yet not one of them " seemed one penny the worse " for young 
hopeful's playful trick. Only, had the chief had the least 
inkling of it, in what a rare taking he would have been, to 
be sure ! 

Now at the very time when we were thus unsuspectingly 
dispensing these Bellangean counterfeits of homoeopathic globules, 
it so fell out that the daughter of M. Arles-Dufour, the great 
Trench national economist, was, apparently, dying of brain fever. 
She was a child of eleven. One of the most distinguished physi- 
cians of the period, president of the Medical Society of Lyons, 
Dr. Jackson, a gentleman of English descent, was attending the 
little patient. The case looked most serious, and Dr. Jackson, 
who was a conscientious physician, told the anxious parents that 
the issue of life or death rested entirely with a higher power 
than poor human skill. M. Dufour, the child's maternal grand- 
father, was an enthusiastic believer in homoeopathy, and in M. Des 
Guidi. As the crisis was drawing nearer and nearer, he eagerly 
urged his daughter and his son-in-law to send for the " great 
healer " the mirabilis sanator, as M. Des Guidi was styled on 
the medal struck in his honour. Professional etiquette required 
the consent of Dr. Jackson. This was willingly given. I at- 
tended M. Des Guidi to the little patient's bedside. To any 
physician with the least practical knowledge of his profession it 
must have been clear that the crisis was at hand the signs of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 217 

imminent epistaxis were unmistakable. M. Des Guidi cast one 
glance at the patient's face. " Pulsatilla," he shouted to me, 
" at once, at once ! " I hastened to administer the magic globules. 

There is a story told of an officer who, having got a slight 
scratch in battle, anxiously applied to the surgeon to attend to 
his "wound." It was a "hot" day, and the surgeon was just 
beginning to run short of supplies. " Kun to the ambulance 
waggon for lint and sticking plaster," shouted he to his assistant, 
" and for God's sake make haste ! " The " wounded " man grew 
pale. " Is there danger then, doctor ? " he faltered. " Yes, there 
is," was the reply, " that your wound will heal before my assistant 
can make his way back." Now here there was every chance of 
the crisis bursting forth before the globules could be administered. 
As it was, the effect was magical, of course. 

Adoration is a feeble expression to describe the admiration 
and gratitude of the happy family even poor I came in for my 
meed of praise as the prompt dispenser of the healing globules. 
It was a scene to make a man laugh, and to make a man cry. 

In the position which I held with M. Des Guidi I had to spend 
considerably above my comparatively small salary. I had to 
represent, and to make an appearance. Well, the doctor had 
agreed, by way of compensation, to hand over to me a certain 
class of his patients. His usual fee was five francs per consul- 
tation ; but he would be satisfied occasionally with two francs. 
Patients who were too poor to pay two francs were to be charged 
one franc, which was to go to me. I might in this way have 
realised some fifteen to twenty francs a day, for M. Des Guidi's 
reputation as a healer had spread far and wide, and we were 
overcrowded with applicants for advice, so that we were occa- 
sionally compelled to hand over some of our would-be patients to 
Dr. Desaix a very near relative of the hero of Marengo and 
Dr. Chazal, two distinguished physicians who had taken to prac- 
tise homoeopathy. I say I might have made some fifteen to 
twenty francs a day : unhappily I soon found out that I could 
not do it ; my poor patients were too poor for me to squeeze 
a franc out of them; they might want the nimble ninepence 
for food or for their children. So it was much more likely that 
many of them, at least, would leave my consultation-room a franc 
richer than a franc poorer. At all events, I know that my income 
from " fees," instead of reaching 200 to 250 a year, came at the 
most up to 80. Indeed, had it not been for literary work, and 
for a few private patients, I really do not know how I could have 
managed at all. 

For consultation by letter our unvarying charge was 20 francs 



218 REMINISCENCES OF 

per letter; and I had to write some twenty to twenty-five a day, 
as a rule, and occasionally up to forty. My chief realised a most 
handsome income of above 8,000 per annum. 

Now I was his factotum. I kept his books ; I wrote his letters ; 
I dispensed his medicines ; I received his patients, and attended 
personally upon a number of the paying ones, where the 
fees went entirely to him ; I translated for him everything of 
interest to him in the foreign medical and scientific periodicals ; I 
attended to his wine-cellar ; I advised in the kitchen, drawing up 
the bill of fare for his rather frequent grand sprat dinners, which 
caught the fat herrings ; I attended his evening parties, and I 
accompanied him on his rare visits to town patients in a desperate 
.plight. Yet people fancied I had a lucrative sinecure of it ! 

Had I been wise in time, I should have insisted upon a more 
satisfactory arrangement from the beginning. It was too late 
after. M. Des Guidi was a gentleman and a man of honour ; 
but he could not and would not see and understand why I 
should not insist upon the payment of my fee from the very 
poorest patient. He had taken it into his head that his great 
historical name made it incumbent upon him to restore the 
Des Guidi family to its pristine lustre, which with him meant, 
in a great measure at least, to effect the reacquisition of the 
estates which had once belonged to the Neapolitan branch. He 
himself, though married, was childless ; but his brother Philip 
had left sons, and it wa,s for them that the noble old gentleman 
slaved and amassed losing sight even of what the commonest 
justice might seem to demand. 

Among my rather multifarious duties I had to visit every 
morning at an early hour an old lady, a Madame Flandin, 
the widow of a silk manufacturer, who had a formidable can- 
cerous ulcer eating away her life. This unhappy woman had 
undergone two grave operations. First, the left breast had 
been removed; afterwards, cancer had reappeared in the 
right breast, when the " radical " cure had once again been 
had recourse to only to turn out just as little radical 
as the first time in eradicating the disease ; which went back 
to the left side, spreading to the armpit. M. Des Guidi, 
being consulted at last, had sensibly advised a generous diet, to 
enable the poor sufferer to bear up against the fearful drain upon 
her constitution. She had been under this treatment for several 
years when I came to attend to her, to dress her wound once a 
day an operation demanding the nicest care and the tenderest 
touch, to guard against bleeding from the exposed surface of the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 219 

wound, which extended at least to six inches by six. There was 
no local treatment whatever, except wetting the covering com- 
press with homceopathically diluted creosote. 

I soon took upon myself to apply creosote in reasonable 
strength to the exposed surface, and to anoint the dressing 
with strong camphor ointment, placing bands moistened with 
Bedative water all round the borders of the wound. My 
patient felt all the better for it. M. Des Guidi, despite his 
sensible notions respecting the necessity of a generous diet, 
had an ineradicable prejudice in favour of eau rougie i.e., 
a very weak mixture of wine and water. In this respect he 
would have gone along excellently well with Dr. Kichardson. 
I thought a pure generous Burgundy would not hurt Madame 
Flandin ; nor did it. On the contrary, she told me over and over 
again that she felt better and stronger in every way than she had 
ever felt since the last operation. But all this I had to risk in 
the very teeth of my chief's instructions and injunctions to the 
contrary, which ran considerably against my feelings, and could 
not but make my position rather delicate, and even difficult. Had 
he but had the slightest inkling of the truth, how he would have 
stormed, to be sure ! However, he had not the least sus- 
picion : he boastingly attributed the very sensible amelioration in 
the state of the patient to the administration of the one-hundred- 
decillionth part of a grain of arsenic ! 

Now, ever since my restoration to health by that wondrous 
agent, I have entertained a very high respect for it. I believe it 
to be truly invaluable in dyspnoea, and most salutary in pul- 
monary consumption. It has of late years been successfully 
employed in diseases of the skin, quite recently, with immense 
successes, in pemphigus (by Dr. Hutchinson). It is a powerful 
agent, as the name implies. In the case of Madame Flandin, I 
had a splendid opportunity to try its efficacy against cancerous 
liberation. But I could not bring my reason to believe in the 
efficacy of the one-huudred-decillionth part of a grain. So I 
ventured to give it in reasonably minute doses as many, perhaps 
most, rational homoeopathists are doing now-a-days, when the 
wholesome nut of the system is being more and more peeled out 
from the monstrous shell in which Hahnemann has enwrapped it. 

I can have no wish to apply to this particular case the homely 
old saying, that " the proof of the pudding is in the eating " 
much less the post, ergo propter. Still I may be permitted to 
mention, as the merest coincidence, of course, the fact that I left 
Madame Flandin, to all outer appearance at least, and according 
to her own testimony, in a comparatively much better condition 



220 EEMINISCENCES OF 

than I had found her in when she was first entrusted to my 
attendance and care, and that not very long after my departure 
from Lyons I learnt that she had departed this life. 

Eau rougie was one of M. Des Guidi's greatest foibles. In fact, 
the good gentleman had in him the making of a thorough-paced 
practical abstainer, such as it would have rejoiced the heart of Sir 
Wilfred Lawson to know. Beer he looked upon as a bemuddling 
abomination, fit only for the heavy Germans and the coarse English. 
He hated both peoples with " cordial intenseness." Spirits were 
his aversion. He was ever preaching against their use. He con- 
temned and rejected with burning indignation the old doctrine of 
the necessity of spirituous stimulants in certain maladies. Once, 
returning from a visit to a patient, we were passing before a cafe, 
when a man suddenly fell down in a semi-apoplectic fit. Acting 
upon the impulse of the moment, I called for cognac and water 
hot, and, despite the angry protestations of my chief, proceeded to 
administer the liquor to the prostrate man, who, on recovering con- 
sciousness, thanked me warmly. Well, M. Des Guidi abused me 
like a pickpocket ; he kept at ifc for three days until I thought he 
would never have done. I told him, by way of attempted palliation 
of my monstrous relapse into one of the most glaring errors and 
heresies of the old school, that I was afraid the man might 1 die. 
t( What of that, sir ? " he asked with an air of supreme disdain ; 
and I verily believe he would not have minded if the poor fellow 
had gone off in his fit, so that no brandy had been administered 
to him. The only fermented liquor which he ever would permit 
his patients to take was red wine drowned in water. White wine 
was unwholesome. Spices and condiments were devil's inven- 
tions he would have none of them. They shortened life, in his 
opinion. " If you wish to attain old age," he used to say, " eschew 
spices and condiments as you would shun the devil." " Salt is 
your only true digester. Stick to it and to it alone, and 
you'll do well in health and purse." Now I had at the time 
invented, and was striving to push into public notice, a 
splendid, mustard for the table a super-excellent "praepep- 
sinical " veritable Bismarck of table mustards, that would enable 
the human stomach to digest almost anything. Scant encourage- 
ment got I from my chief in this philanthropic enterprise of mine. 
" Your wretched concoction is a poison, sir ! " he cried, when I 
with becoming diffidence ventured to bespeak his favourable notice 
of my truly splendid mustard. He always sir'd me when he was 
angrily inclined. Otherwise he would call me, mon ami, even mon 
cher ami or mio caro and once, in a fit of effusion, dilettissimo 
mio. 1 am sorry to say this glorious excogitation of my brain 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 221 

remains still practically in embryo. Avia au lecteur, as the 
French have it : here is a brilliant chance for a party with a small 
capital, and sound sense, to realise a princely fortune, and gain 
the gratitude of an old Bohemian. Now my venerable master 
Kaspail, on the contrary, looked upon spices and condiments as 
necessaries of life, and extolled garlic to the skies simply for that 
it was, according to him, the great condiment of the poor ! Yet 
he lived to an old age. 

These extreme antipathies were at least perfectly intelligible 
in a man like M. Des Guidi. But he had another idiosyncracy 
which certainly was quite unaccountable he positively hated 
and dreaded milk ! Not a drop of that most useful, most nutri- 
tive, and most harmless fluid would he allow his patients to take 
with his consent at least even with the " homoeopathically " 
prepared cocoa, which he generally recommended for breakfast, 
and for the meal which we call tea. Eien de si trattre que le laii, 
was his eternal burden, which he would drag in on every occasion, 
in and out of season. One of his bitterest enemies in the profes- 
sion he had in his former allopathic days been his warmest friend 
assailed him in a medical periodical of the time as le laid trattrc. 
It was an execrable pun, and extremely lame withal, as M. Des 
Guidi happened to be a remarkably handsome old gentleman ; but 
it showed how generally his aversion to milk was known. As for 
coffee, M. Des Guidi vehemently denounced its use in any shape or 
form whatever except as a remedial agent in the third homoeo- 
pathic attenuation. He would go well-nigh crazed when people in- 
sisted pleading with him for their after-dinner cup of coffee, to aid 
digestion. " Aid digestion ! " he would scream at them at the 
top of his voice, enough to scare them out of their senses. " Aid 
digestion, indeed ! Coffee is a most deleterious drug. It worries 
and wearies the stomach, and plays sad havoc with the nerves. 
Take plenty of salt with your meals, and you will digest them 
without pouring that black abomination down your throat, which 
is sure to shorten the life of whoever may partake of it." 

Now, there was my dear friend Watkins, late of Falcon Square, 
the famous healer of gout and rheumatism and a host of kindred 
ailments, now long since gone to the place where he must have 
found his " occupation gone " too. He was a Fellow of the Royal 
College of Surgeons and a noble " Savage," a genuine good man 
in every relation of life, a most excellent physician, and a sound 
thinker in the main, albeit somewhat eccentric. "Well, he also 
was affected with a lune. He looked upon the use of salt as the 
great mistake of the human race, the fons et origo malorum ! He 
seemed somehow to have a notion that the patriarchs owed their 
astonishing longevity simply to the fact that salt had not yet 



222 ' REMINISCENCES OF 

been discovered in their time. He never took salt, but he dearly 
loved his cup, or rather his cups, of coffee, infernally strong, and 
tarnation hot, as Quin the actor is said to have ordered a cup 
once upon a time in a coffee-house in Bond Street, in ridicule of 
a " beau's " affectation of refinement of language. Well, Watkins 
lived to a decent age, in spite of M. Des Guidi's axiomatic 
notion of the killing power of coffee ; yet he died considerably 
short of even one of the centuries the salt-abstaining patriarchs 
used to live through of old. Happy thought with humblest 
apologies to Burnand for infringement of copyright: Eschew 
generalisation, and don't be dogmatic if you can possibly help it. 



I do not know whether I ought to have used the term " lune" 
in the preceding paragraph. I had perhaps better have said 
" craze." Once upon a time a distinguished barrister, the son of 
an eminent judge, and now himself a brilliant ornament of the 
bench, took me severely to task in open Court of Queen's Bench 
for using a word so absolutely unknown in the English language 
as "lune." Well, I had it upon the authority of Shakespeare, Byron, 
and one of my dearest and best beloved friends, the late 0. H. 
Bennett, the genial illustrator of a crowd of books for juveniles and 
children of larger growth, and in the last few years of his short 
life a constant contributor of many of the best " cuts " in Punch. 
" Lune " was a favourite word with him, and I thought he knew 
English indifferently well, at least. However, as the same gentle- 
man, on the same occasion, took upon himself to declare that quand 
meme was not good French, and the Virgilian quot noctibus was 
not good Latin, I did not mind so much about the rebuke. 
" Live and learn " has been my motto through life. Happy 
thought ; do not be too absolute in ex cathedra assertions ; always 
remember what Eobinson says of "their not knowing everything 
down in Judee." 



M. Desaix was the second in position and prestige of the 
Lyons homceopathists. He was an allo-homceopathist, and 
something more. Being gifted with a keen sense of humour, 
he went to his patients somewhat in the fashion of Roman am- 
bassadors of old, who used to offer the kings and peoples to whom 
they were accredited the choice of peace or war in the folds of 
their toga. He blandly asked them which system of treatment 
they preferred the allopathic or the homoeopathic. 

The Minister and the General in " Bombastes Furioso " say in 
reply to the King's gracious inquiry anent the cut of tobacco 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 223 

which they would prefer to stop their pipes with, whether long or 

short : 

So long as we your Majesty's favour claim, 
Long cut or short cut : to us 'tis all the same. 

So Dr. Desaix to his patients : 

So long as I your confidence may claim, 

" Allo." or " Horn.": to me 'tis all the same. 

I think I hardly need add that this gentleman, who was really 
a clever and skilful physician, and a man of sterling sense, 
would in all serious cases contemptuously disregard the fiction of 
infinitesimals, no matter whether the patient was " similarly " 
inclined or " contrariwise," 

Now it so happened that M. des Guidi, who enjoyed remark- 
ably good health as a rule, and had very rarely occasion to try 
the efficacy of his sugar globules upon himself, and then only in 
some slight passing indisposition, found himself suddenly pros- 
trated by an excruciatingly painful attack of sciatica, which most 
unreasonably resisted the most powerful homoeopathic medica- 
tion. Even twelve respectable globules of colchicum were 
powerless against it, though they were given in the thirtieth 
attenuation. Our universal infallible panacea in megrim, ear- 
ache, toothache, facial neuralgia, and tic-douloureux, and all 
kindred pains in other parts of the human frame, aconite, in 
the twelfth attenuation, failed, which had never failed before 
at least, in no case where the patient had had sufficient patience 
to patiently await the beneficent action. Nay, veiatrum was tried, 
which was just then being highly extolled as the great antarthritio 
by Rau, Griesslich, Croserio, Lavigne de Laplagne, and other 
leading chieftains of homoeopathy; and it was tried in vain. 
Poor Dr. Des Guidi, a man of high-strung nervous organisation, 
and most acutely sensitive to physical pain, was in a pitiable 
state. I never could see suffering without making at least an 
effort to relieve it ; so I went to consult Dr. Desaix. Now that 
gentleman's tactics in his battles with sickness and pain were 
like those of his famous relation at Marengo. He declared for 
vigorous action. M. Des Guidi, worn out with suffering, gave way 
to our united solicitations to relieve him by the administration of 
more sensible doses, as Desaix expressed it, than infinitesimals. We 
soon had the intense satisfaction of finding that aconite internally, 
and applied externally in the form of liniment, responded to the 
call made upon it. Our interesting patient got speedily better ; 
eo much so, indeed, that he fell back upon homoeopathic doses 



224 REMINISCENCES OF 

next morning". Man is a curious being. M. Des Guidi, once 
restored to health, was positively wroth with me for having 
taken advantage of his weakness, and he actually upbraided 
Desaix for that he had lent himself to my " machinations " to 
make the leading homceopathist of France practically confess the 
impotence of the new system ! 

Altogether, there was an uncomfortable tension in our rela- 
tions. Just at this juncture, an acceptable offer of a more genial 
and lucrative occupation reached me from another quarter. I 
placed this offer before my chief, and asked him to come to a more 
satisfactory arrangement with me ; particularly to drop the fiction 
of fees which^I could not enforce, and to pay me a sufficient 
salary in future. He obstinately declined until I had closed with 
the offer and pledged my word to enter upon the duties of my new 
position within a certain short term. Then he suddenly agreed to 
consent, giving in to every condition I had stipulated for. It was 
too late ; all I could do was to obtain an extension of time, to 
enable me to stay with the old gentleman until he might find 
someone to replace me. So we parted to my sincere sorrow, and 
to his professed deep regret. I had grown to like M. Des Guidi 
almost to loving. Maybe a little more patience and forbearance 
on my part might have but man is a wayward creature, and what 
is the use* of dwelling upon idle " might-have-beens ? " 

As this ends the chapter of my Lyons reminiscences, I may 
be permitted to avail myself of the opportunity thus afforded me 
of going back to England to take up the thread of my recollec- 
tions of dear friends of mine there, whom the exigency of sor^e 
sort of connection in my narrative compelled me to temporarily 
drop rather abruptly many pages back. 

Thomas Littleton Holt was, and remained to the end of his 
life, a Bohemian in the widest and fullest sense of the word. He 
might be called with equal justice a born journalist. 

He was through life connected in some capacity or way or 
other with the press as proprietor, or editor of papers, reporter, 
leading-article writer, or contributor. 

He was an excellent Greek scholar, both ancient and modern, 
and for years editor of a Greek paper published in London, which 
advocated strenuously and eloquently, and in choiest modern 
Greek, the cession of the Ionia|jL Islands to Greece. If my memory 
serves me aright, the paper belonged to an Ionian gentleman 
named Papa Nikola. 

In the early period of the railway mania, Holt was proprietor 



AN OLD BOHEMIA. 225 



of the Iron Times, which for a time flourished exceedingly. 
Nearly all the projected lines were on its books for advertise- 
ments. Holt told me himself that he might dispose of his 
Property and interest in the paper by sale for 15,000 cash ; and 
am sure there was no exaggeration in the statement. In those 
halcyon times the prosperous man would on Saturdays fling from 
his neat little trap lots of fourpenny bits among the street boys 
to scramble for. One day he brought home with him a bag, with 
a thousand sovereigns in it, which he emptied on the bed, then 
lay down upon them, and rolled over them. "Now," he cried, 
rising, "I can truly aver that I have been literally rolling in 
gold." 

Unfortunately for himself, he calculated upon a longer spell of 
success for his venture than attended it in the end. The great 
Times suddenly made the discovery that there was not momBy 
enough in the whole world to carry out the one-half of the pro- 
jected railway schemes in England, and placed this discovery 
before the public with ample proofs and vouchers in support 
of it. 

The result was disastrous to a great many people; among 
others to poor Holt, who fought the battle perseveringly and 
courageously so long as there was a penny left to fight jt with. 
He lost everything. 

But he was not discouraged ; he started venture after venture 
with greater or less success, generally the latter, and not one 
among them with sufficient life in it to last longer thfn a few 
weeks or months at the most. 

The penny newspaper stamp weighed most heavily and unfairly 
upon all projected newspaper ventures. Holt swore he would at 
least be instrumental in abolishing this iniquitous tax upon intel- 
ligence, and he kept his word. In 1854, I think, when the 
Crimean War was on, he started a paper called the Army and 
Navy Despatch. Boldly ignoring the law, he brought this paper 
out without a stamp, and defied the Inland Revenue Department. 

The Army and Navy Despatch proved a qualified success, at 
least. Holt incurred penalties to the handsome tune of one 
million seven hundred thousand pounds sterling. Had he in- 
curred a twenty pound fine it would have ruined him ; but the 
one million seven hundred thousand pounds aggregate fines well- 
nigh proved the making of the man, who coolly kept on publishing 
and selling his paper. The publishing office was next door'to tho 
Angel and Sun pub .in the Strand, where we used to meet to 
discuss the despatches from the seat of war. 

At the outset of tjie Crimean expedition I had ridiculed the 
canard of the capture of Sebastopol, so eagerly and unreflectingly 

Q 



226 REMINISCENCES OF 

swallowed by Louis Napoleon, and, I am afraid, by the British 
Ministry, as it was unquestionably by the British press Times, 
Chronicle, Herald, Post, News, and all. The Times even gave 
marvellous details of the destruction of the Eussian fleet in 
Sebastopol harbour ; and the Morning Chronicle (I think) hand- 
somely destroyed the numerous forts of the Kussian stronghold, 
by the simple process of blowing up the lot, most liberally 
bestowing large garrisons upon each of them as many, in fact, 
as twenty-two thousand men upon Fort Constantine alone, a 
pradjtaal impossibility on the face of it. 

I stood almost alone at the time in my view of the matter, 
jmtil the real facts became known at last by official despatches 
from Balaclava. 

Thomas Littleton did me the honour ever after, whenever he 
had need or occasion for it, to consult me, and defer to my 
judgment upon all questions touching the war and Continental 
politics. 

The publisher of the Army and Navy Despatch was no less a 
personage than Charles Kerrisoii Sala, the brother of George 
Augustus, and the printer was a Mr. Archibald Hay Jack, " a 
canny Scot ! " "When the Inland Eevenue Department found that 
they could make no impression upon Holt, they meanly bullied 
the publisher, and threatened the printer with a wretched old 
Act of one of the Georges, which provided for the confiscation of 
the type and the breaking of the presses of recalcitrant printers. 
Had printer and publisher but laughed at the brutum fulmen, the 
probabilities were the department would have given way, a^it is 
not always wise to apply the screw of a tyrannical old law. As 
it was, however, the Army and Navy Despatch had to go the 
way of all defunct periodicals ; but the Government soon after 
abolished the newspaper stamp. 

The Morning News was another of Holt's speculations. It was 
a daily .paper; it appeared somewhere about the time of the 
"Waterloo Bridge mystery, upon which, indeed, it chiefly lived for 
a time. 

The Iron Times had been such a very satisfactory spec while 
it lasted, that Holt repeatedly tried to revive it, unhappily with 
worse than indifferent results. 

Once he succeeded in bringing it out as a grand political 
daily. A certain City merchant gave a thousand pounds down, 
and promised three thousand more to start it. 

Here was a slice of good luck for Thomas Littleton. The 
kind-hearted Bohemian's first thought was to make his brethren 
of the craft share in the enjoyment of it. John Brough was 
retained for the department of science ; William Brough had the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 227 

theatres handed over to him ; Courtenay was engaged as general 
reporter ; the foreign department was handed to me ; and so 
forth. To celebrate in a becomingly festive way the inauguration 
of the auspicious event, a grand supper was spread somewhere in 
Piccadilly, where Holt had taken apartments. All the members 
of the staff were invited. There was every delicacy of the season, 
with lashings of liquor. Excellent Mrs. Holt presided over the 
supper table ; sweet, charming Miss Holt made the punch in a 
fashion that almost came up to my own style of perfection. Oh, *" 
we were all so happy then, with such*bright prospects before us ! 
But it was the old, old story. 

Ere a brief fortnight had winged its flight, our " capitalist " '. 
chose to cry off, for some fanciful reason or other certainly not 
for any legitimate cause. There was no help for it, however : we - 
had to let the matter rest there. The paper died, and we could" 
only mourn and moan over it. 

I may as well mention in this place that the Iron Times was 
not the only journal on which I was disappointed in the foreign 
editorship. Years after the birth and decease of that great 
Holtean venture, Mr. Stiff, having sold the well-known London 
Journal, established a daily political paper of the same name 
Nearly all the men that had been on the Iron Times were engaged 
on this paper also I as foreign editor and occasional leader- 
writer, at eight guineas a week. Poor William Dalton, a deaf? 
most perseveringly unlucky friend of mine, was appointed general 
manager, if my memory misleads me not. At least, he made the 
engagements for Stiff. Unhappily, the purchaser of the London 
Journal took it into his head that the new political paper might 
injuriously affect his own venture ; and he found a vice-chancellor 
to endorse and enforce the opinion ! So there was an end of that 
very brief dream too. 

On the occasion of the marriage of the Princess Koyal of 
England to the Prussian Crown Prince, Holt attended as reporter 
for a great London daily paper. He looked so grand "and im- 
posing that he actually managed to proceed to the steamer in or 
on one of the royal carriages, the English attendants evidently 
taking him for a German baron at the very least, whilst the 
German attendants must have taken him for a noble English 
lord and, in very truth, he would have done honour in every 
way to the Upper House. 

Seeing Prince Albert overcome by his emotion on parting 
from his so dearly beloved daughter, Holt walked up to him in 
an uncontrollable burst of sympathy, warmly grasped the Prince 
Consort's hands, saying most earnestly, " These tears do honour 
to your Royal Highness' heart. I am a father; I can feel for 

Q 2 



228 REMINISCENCES OF 

your Boyal Highness!" There is reason to believe that the 
Prince never knew who he was that had so warmly sympathised 
with him. 

Once upon a time another slice of good luck, if one may take 
it so, fell to Holt's share. He had taken a house in Brompton. 
Before he had been in it a quarter, two notices were served upon 
him, the one by a challenger of his putative landlord's title to the 
property not to pay rent to said putative landlord, the other by 
said putative landlord not to pay rent to said challenger of the 
title. 

Holt's conduct was admirable on the occasion. His sense of 
justice would not permit him to side with either until an authori- 
tative legal decision should have declared in favour of one or the 
other claimant. 

I believe it was something like two years before the litigants 
would even join in an application, which the court immediately 
granted, for the appointment of a receiver. By this time Holt 
had grown so thoroughly disgusted with his doubtful position 
between the two litigants that he preferred leaving the place 
altogether. By a curious coincidence he moved away the very 
morning after the appointment of the receiver. Wasn't it 
strange, now ? 

Holt was an inveterate " goaker," as poor Artemus used to< 
have it, and dearly loved to mystify people. I am almost sure 
that some, at least, of the " sells in Greek letters," which figured 
conspicuously in a certain curious series of mystifications palmed 
upon poor Jamie Grant, of the Morning Advertiser, were of Holt's 
manufacture. 

He also used to tell with rich unction a funny story about the 
early days of that gentleman, who was truly to his great 
honour be it spoken the architect of his own fortune and 
position. When a young man, Jamie was a journeyman baker at 
New Aberdeen, Holt used to tell us, with an unconquerable call to 
authorship in him. He was always sending papers to Tait's 
Magazine. At last one of these attracted the editor's favourable 
attention, and two guineas were sent to the young aspirant to 
literary fame in acknowledgment of his contribution to the 
magazine. The successful author, happy and elated, invited 
. three young friends of his to take a run with him to the Old 
Granite City, where they proceeded to a famous hostelry and 
ordered a bottle of the "best red port wine." The bottle was 
brought, and the lads drank the contents religiously to the last 
drop, looking rather dubiously at each other meanwhile, and 
expressing in confidential whispers their amazement at the taste 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 29 

of the great folks who could patronise beverages like that. Jamie 
then ordered ale, which positively horrified the ancient waiter, 
drinking beer upon wine being held altogether inadmissible at 
the hotel, as he told the lads, a declaration which the portly host, 
upon appeal to him, fully endorsed. Jamie humbly pleaded that 
the " red port wine " had made him and his companions awfully 
thirsty. "What!" cried the host, with angry indignation. "My 
port wine has made you thirst for beer ! What can you mean ? " 
And taking up the bottle, putting it to his nose, and holding it 
up to the light, he found that the waiter had served the poor 
lads with mushroom ketchup instead of port wine. This story 
somehow always seemed to have the power of rousing Jamie 
vGrant to fierce wrath whenever it happened to turn up in his 
presence, and you might even excite his ire by simply asking 
him to take a glass of red port wine with you. 

On the day of Orsini's execution, my ever dear friend Robert 
Brough, who had that very morning perpetrated a fiercely 
denunciatory apostrophe to the address of the then French 
Emperor, beginning, I think, with something like the following 
rather hot and strong initiatory lines I- 
The white young head has fall'n : it was decreed ; 
Thou could' st not save him, wretch ! The Pow'rs on high 
Would not permit on history's page the lie 
Of thy Name coupled with a noble deed, 
Unborn truth- seeking ages to mislead ; 

.and so on in the same strain asked me to call with him on the 
editors of sundry London journals, to see whether one or other 
of them might not be prevailed upon to let the poem appear in 
his paper. We met with worse than indifferent success. Walker, 
of the Daily News, bade us walk. At the Telegraph they were 
indignant : the idea of coming to them with a vile attack upon 
>their very good friend and most excellent patron! The great 
Del of the Tiniea declined politely, bestowing upon the talented 
author of the poem the solace of a compliment. In fact, it was 
.the same everywhere. In the end there was only the great 
Beer and Bible organ left to try our chance. We did. Jamie 
declined likewise, telling us they never inserted original poetry 
in their paper. Eobert tried his hardest to overcome this ob 7 
jection. In vain. At last, soured by continued disappointment 
in this matter on which he had set his heart, Eobert invited 
" Mr. Grant " to take" a glass of the " best red port wine " with 
ns. This riled Jamie awfully. He jumped up from the editorial 
chair, and, with a fierce glare and in a voice of thunder, bade us 
begone, and trouble him no more with "assassinating lines." 



230 REMINISCENCES OF 

" Do, Mr. Grant, come," said Eoberfc, coaxingly ; " come and have 
a bottle of the best red port wine with us. I mean it. No catcli 
in it, I assure you." It was a mercy I succeeded in dragging 
him away in time, or blood might have flowed in the editorial 
sanctum. I had to pay the piper after all for this little dance, 
several contributions of mine to the M. A. being returned to me, 
declined with thanks. The poem never appeared in print. 

I have an uncomfortable suspicion that this somewhat digres- 
sive gossip is tending to extend a little beyond moderate bounds ; 
yet I crave permission to throw in here a few more jottings anent 
Holt and other old friends. I think they may serve at least to- 
break and relieve the slightly objectionable sameness of sus- 
tained subjectivity which must naturally pervade all personal 
reminiscences. 

It was in the days when the removal of Jewish disabilities- 
formed the subject of fierce contention and heated controversy 
between the friends of progress and enlightenment and political 
and religious and social emancipation on the one side, and the 
old, old pullbacks and obscurists in the land on the other ; tha 
same as we have ib at the present time in the great Bradlaugh 
question, which will also have exactly the same result : e pur si 
muove ; in this nineteenth century of ours the world cannot be 
expected to stand still, much less to go back. 

There was to be a " field day," or, more correctly speaking, a 
"field night," at the Cogers 3 Hall a "representative" meeting 
of all the political thinkers or tinkers, whichever way one 
might feel disposed to take it on the great question of the day. 
The wonderful aptitude of man to make mountains out of the 
smallest molehills has, like cosmogony, puzzled philosophers in 
all ages. 

Holt, whose bearings were rather Conservative than other- 
wise strange to say, perhaps, I have known Conservative, ay, 
even Tory Bohemians,* in my time asked George Augustus Sala 
and my humble self to accompany him to the meeting aforesaid. 
Well, we went. Earely, in the course of a pretty long and exten- 
sive experience, have I heard so much fustian and balderdash 

* I think I may mention here glorious John Bridgman, one of my 
oldest and dearest friends, as a conspicuous instance in this special line 
of Bohemianism. At least, when I accidentally met him in 1880, after 
the great G-ladstonian victory achieved at the hustings, and, in the exu- 
berance of my joy, indulged before him in an exultant war dance over 
the imaginary prostrate body of the Earl of Beaconsfield, he gave me 
such an awful look that I dropped dancing, and executed instead a 
precipitate strategic movement to the rear. No matter I love 
revere the dear old boy. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 231 

talked as at that meeting; and the commonest justice compels 
me to admit that the Hebrew faction talked about as much and 
as gross nonsense as the anti-Semites did. It is truly wonderful 
that men will not see the very broad distinction and separation 
between politics and religion. 

Thomas Littleton had a marvellously keen sense of humour 
and of the ludicrous. He listened for a long time apparently 
with rapt attention, impartially applauding the speakers on either 
side to the very echo. Then he craved permission to address the 
meeting. It was granted. 

Thomas Littleton was by no means a bad speaker; he could 
be eloquent when he liked his subject. His intention this even- 
ing clearly was to sell his audience not a very difficult task, 
considering the general composition of the meeting. What he 
said was in reality simply a kind of repetitive medley of what 
had been said by others in the course of the evening. But as he 
was careful not to commit himself absolutely to either side, and 
delivered himself with ponderous gravity of manner and impas- 
sioned gestures, he evidently made a deep impression upon his 
hearers, whom he bamboozled, moreover, by interlarding his 
address with a number of extemporized pretended Greek and 
Latin quotations, some of which, at least, embodied more or less 
outrageous absurdities and wild assertions, which he brazenly 
fathered upon divers fathers of the Church. He obligingly gave 
free translations in the vernacular, confidently appealing for the 
correctness of original and translation, and appositeness of quo- 
tation to "every scholar " in the room, to whom he was sure the 
passages quoted must be quite familiar ; but he appealed more 
especially, with a graceful wave of his hand in our direction, to 
the "two well-known gentlemen and political writers on the 
Press present " which made me, at least, feel most awkward and 
uncomfortable. The ore rotundo way in which he rolled out the 
original Greek of his forgeries would have delighted a Person. 

Poor St. Chrysostom had some strange sayings put into his 
mouth by the audacious my stifier, which certainly were not all of 
them golden. One of these was to the effect that this holy father 
saw no objection whatever to unconverted Jews sitting down 
with Christian Gentiles at a public feast, so long as they were 
ready and willing to bear their share towards the expenses of the 
entertainment which passage the audacious mystifier gravely 
told the meeting might certainly be adduced by the advocates of 
Hebrew emancipation as pointedly favouring their view; for 
would not Hebrew candidates for Parliament have to pay their 
expenses ? When I heard him say this I felt more uncomfortable 
than ever ; but it passed over all right, and thunders of applause 



232 REMINISCENCES OF 

from "both sides of the house," and the chairman's warmest 
thanks for " having raised the discussion to the befitting high 
level," rewarded the speaker for his exertions. 

So the affair came to a mosfc satisfactory termination, for 
which I blessed my stars; for I had been apprehensive of an 
ignominious removal from the hall, and Gr. A. confessed to me 
afterwards that he also had had his qualms about the matter. 

When we were leaving, a lank, cadaverous young man intro- 
duced himself to us as a graduate of Oxford, an assiduous 
student of Church history, who would feel deeply obliged to the 
eloquent gentleman and profound scholar whom he had the 
honour of addressing, if he would of his kind courtesy tell him 
where certain of the passages quoted were to be found, more 
particularly the concluding and conclusive one from St. Chry- 
sostom. Holt was not put out or embarrassed in the least ; his 
bearing on the occasion was truly superb. He received the 
innocent young man's application with grave courtesy, and 
expressed his profound regret that, although the passages quoted 
were familiar to him as household words, he yet could not place 
his hands on the exact books and pages where they were to be 
found. However, the library of the British Museum would 
surely enable an assiduous reader to trace them to their 
original homes. The innocent youth left us with profuse thanks, 
expressing his firm intention to " search " the library. 

I cannot say whether he persevered in his purpose, I never 
met him again ; but if he did persevere, he must have had a nice 
time of it. 

I remember having read somewhere an anecdote of the 
original Mr. John Walter of The Times relating to the troubles 
and trials of that great man in the days when the general strike 
of the compositors and pressmen in his employ gave him the 
opportunity of displaying to the full his wonderful physical and 
mental capacity, cumulating in his own person the functions and 
labours of writer, compositor, and pressman. On a certain day 
relata referocopy fell short by one half-column; there was 
none ready at hand to fill up, and time pressed. With the 
inspiration of genius, Mr. Walter laid hold of a column of " pie," 
and prepared it in the most expeditious way in such fashion that 
it might pass muster as an article in some foreign tongue, and 
popped it in, with a few lines of introduction stating this incom- 
prehensible mass to be a paper in some Hindustanee dialect 
translation to follow in the course of a few days. 
. Of course the promised translation never made its appearance, 
and nobody seemed to care about it. At least, if there were any 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 233 

letters upon the subject, they were quietly dropped into the 
editorial basket. Newspaper readers are apt to forget by to- 
morrow what they have been reading to-day. 

Ten years after, Mr. Walter was on a visit to a noble earl in 
Cheshire. Here a gentleman was introduced to him one day, 
said to be a most learned pundit and distinguished Oriental 
scholar. The instant this gentleman caught Mr. Walter's name, 
he expressed his delight at meeting that great man of The Times. 
" Ah ! Mr. Walter," he cried ; " I have long and ardently wished 
for an opportunity to solve a problem which has puzzled me for 
the last ten years." And, drawing from his pocket a tattered old 
copy of The Times, he pointed out to the embarrassed proprietor 
of the journal the alleged Hindu stanee article, which he con- 
fessed had baffled his most strenuous and assiduous efforts to 
make anything of, although he had tried every known dialect of 
the language. 

I cannot say whether Mr. Walter made a clean breast of it. 
If I had happened to find myself in a similar fix, I certainly 
should have taken refuge in my profound ignorance of Hindu- 
stance, as I should have been afraid the pundit would pound me 
into a jelly, for having made ten years of his life a perplexity and 
a, misery unto him. 

Our cadaverous young friend might have searched all the 
libraries in the world in vain for any one of the Greek quotations 
that had popped so glibly over Thomas Littleton Holt's lips. 
Perhaps he did his level best. If he did, I think it was a good 
thing for Thomas Littleton that he never met him again. Though 
for the matter of that, upon second thoughts, I feel disposed to 
believe it would not have mattered much if he had ; for it was 
as difficult to nonplus Holt as it is proverbially to catch a 
weasel asleep. I remember only one solitary instance that he 
had not the laugh and the laughers on his side. It happened 
this wise : 

In dear Andrew Halliday's " awfully " flattering sketch of me 
as Dr. Goliath in " Mrs. Lirriper's Lodgings," there is introduced 
a Mrs. Mavors. The lady designated by that name was once well 
known and respected in Bohemia, and in 1851 many of the political 
exiles then gathered in London under the lead of Mazzini, Ledru- 
Eollin, Louis Blanc, Tausenau, Lothar Bucher, Semper, Heine- 
xnann, Fickler, Frank, Sigel, Ruge, Karl Blind, Goegg, Haug, 
Oswald, Kinkel, Hertle, Banya, Uhazi, Falk, Buchheim (who 
has now for many years been Professor at King's College), and 
others gratefully called her the "mother of the refugees." 

Well, once upon a time this lady bestowed a liberal treat of 



234 REMINISCENCES OF 

beef and ham, and pickles and bread galore, upon certain dwellers 
in Bohemia, accidentally gathered for the nonce at the Chemical 
Times and Chat office in Brydges Street. (The Chemical Times was 
my own publication at the time ; Chat "belonged " to a corporation 
of three viz., G. A. Sala, E. E. Pond, and Benjamin Clayton.) The 
two latter were present on the occasion, with Charles Kerrison 
Sala, James Kenney, and several others. In the midst of 
the glee and the merry-making, who should tumble in, quite 
promiscuously as the saying is, but Thomas Littleton Holt, 
who at once set to work with a will partaking of the- 
spread ? Somehow he could not forbear making a few remarks, 
ungratefully intended to raise a laugh against the lady host of the 
feast, and that might justly be displeasing to her. However,, 
without the least sign of anger or annoyance, she quietly turned 
to Pond, asking him, in the words of Beau Brummel to Alvanley, 
" Pray who is your fat friend ? " There was a general laugh, this 
time against Holt, who joined in it rather sourly and uncom- 
fortably, and apologised to the lady. This was the first and the- 
last time, in the course of an experience extending over many 
years, that I ever saw Holt discomfited. 

There is another noble Bohemian I feel truly happy to say 
is, for he is still to the fore and flourishing a brilliant and versa- 
tile writer, and one of our best theatrical and operatic critics, 
though I believe he is no longer in that line a veritable prince 
of and in Bohemia in brief, a polished and accomplished gentle- 
man and scholar, and a sterling good fellow withal, who dearly 
loves a " goak." One of the very dearest boys in our set in days 
of yore, whom I will call stout old John, known to all Bohemians, 
and loved by all who knew him and who know him, was truly 
unbounded in his hospitality; so unbounded, indeed, that he 
used to leave the key to his chambers on a shelf near the door, 
in order that the initiated might enter freely in his absence. 

One night he came home from a social meeting very con- 
siderably inclined for bed, and, the night being rather cold,, 
enjoying in anticipation the luxury of down, soft sheets, and 
warm blankets. 

He found the lamp burning, and, chalked in large letters in a 
well-known handwriting on his table, he read the following brief 
and rather cool communication to his address : 

" DEAR JOHN, I am gone to bed. Whatever you do, do not 
disturb me. 

" Ever thine, ." 

Poor John ! He grumbled a bit, and he swore a bit, and he 
passed the night rather indifferently on the sofa, with the addi- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 235 

tional mortification of receiving in the morning his interesting 
friend's sympathizing condolings on his somewhat worn and 
haggard looks, the said friend himself looking as fresh as a 
daisy. 

A brother of stout old John, a professional gentleman of high 
respectability, and a housekeeper, fared still worse, having 
Sheridan's trick upon Wilberforce played upon him. One nighfc 
our " mutual friend " had, in the catholic kindness of his henrt, 
mildly remonstrated with a guardian of the peace respecting tho 
said guardian's somewhat arbitrary way of dealing with an un- 
happy unfortunate, and had been incontinently " run in," as the 
polite police phrase goes. Well, he gave this highly respectable 
'gentleman's name and address as his own, and sent for him to bail 
him out ! I remember the affair very well. I met respectability 
coming from the police station : he was in a rare fume, and I 
found it no easy task to soothe his ruffled temper and smooth 
down his bristling indignation. 

When we asked our friend afterwards how he had passed his 
time in his cell, he coolly replied, " Splendidly ; I spat on the 
ground and made a slide." 

I have good reason to believe that it was the same gentleman 
who palmed upon the Constitutionnel, owned at the time by Dr. 
Veron, that amazing mystification about poor Colonel SibtUorpei 
It was very shortly after the death of the colonel, when there 
appeared in that then great organ of public opinion in France 
what purported to be a memoir of that eminent statesman, 
whose loss his bereaved country was so bitterly lamenting. It 
was written in elegant French. Our friend is an accomplished 
linguist. I will give here a brief outline of what I can, on the 
spur of the moment, call back to mind of this precious production. 

It set out with a brazen assertion that " Waldo Laerdo de 
Sibthorpe" was, as his name clearly indicated, of French extrac- 
tion, which accounted for the polished urbanity of his bearing 
and manners, and for the unvarying suavity of his language. 
The deceased eminent statesman appeared first on the stage of 
public life as a brilliant young officer in that most distinguished 
corps of the British service the horse marines. He gained great 
and well-deserved fame at the naval battle of Navarino, where he 
led one of the most dashing charges ever recorded in ancient or 
modern naval warfare. The war being over, and there being no 
immediate prospect of renewed strife in Europe, the gallant 
young officer, irresistibly impelled by his adventurous spirit, 
went to the East Indies to place his sword at the service of the 
Great Mogul, hard pressed at the time by the Mahrattas, the 



236 REMINISCENCES OF 

Pathans, and the Bajah of Travancore. The valorous colonel 
like the immortal Clive, he preferred this modest designation to 
the higher-sounding titles of general or marshal overcame the 
enemies of " His Sublimity of Delhi," compelling them to return 
to their allegiance. The grateful Emperor, appreciating at 
their just high value the services of the great Franco- Anglian, 
bestowed upon him the most exalted order of "The Golden 
Bramah Lock and Key." Covered with glory, the gallant warrior 
returned to his native land, where he was at once sent to parlia- 
ment by one of the largest, most populous, and most important 
commercial cities. Here he soon displayed that brilliant oratorical 
talent and those large statesmanlike views which marked him 
from the outset of his parliamentary career for one of the greatest 
political leaders of the age. As a political economist he ranked 
very high ; indeed, it might be said that he was the equal, at least, 
of his old friend and fellow-warrior in the Delhi service, the 
illustrious Joseph Hume, the enricher of the British coinage, so 
affectionately called " fourpenny Joe " by a grateful people. The 
colonel was through life a staunch and consistent free-trader ; he, 
conjointly with his friends Disraeli and Newdegate, initiated and 
carried through the great movement for the repeal of the Corn 
Laws. And in this fashion the memoir went on to the last 
line. 

The intended victims of this audacious hoax, the great French 
public, took it all in like butter. I think I remember a leader 
upon the subject in the Constitutionnel, dwelling with "just 
pride " on the fact that the deceased distinguished horse marine 
and eminent statesman had been d'origine franfaise. Of course, 
the magnanimous French nation, the article went on, I think, 
were always disposed to do homage to all that was great and good 
in other nations. Still, it was impossible that Frenchmen should 
not feel a certain elation when finding thus that they might claim 
the kinship of a common origin with this most illustrious 
foreigner. 

One of our best comedians and burlesque actors, a most 
valued member of the Savage Club, and a truly excellent kind- 
hearted fellow, dearly likes to indulge in innocent mystifications. 
Walking one day, arm in arm with another distinguished comedian 
and burlesque actor, somewhere about Leicester Square, he espied 
a basket of eggs in the show-window of a dealer in artistic wares, 
with an intimation that new-laid eggs might be had there every 
morning at 2d. each. Somehow our friend, whose motto is " live 
and let live," had a strong objection to the cumulation of incon- 
gruous trades and occupations, so he determined to interview 
the proprietor of the establishment, which he and his friend 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 237 

accordingly entered. Putting on his most solemn face he, with 
imperturbable gravity of manner, addressed to the shopkeeper, 
who smilingly came forward to ask the presumed customers' 
pleasure, a long string of inquiries, such as, " Would the newness 
of the eggs be guaranteed ? Where did they come from P Was 
it a regular poultry farm ? Were the fowls Cochin or Dorking, 
or what ? How many new-laid eggs could be regularly supplied 
a day ? Was there any objection to enter into a contract for 
larger quantities ? or, in the event of a gross being ordered per 
diem would thirteen be given to the dozen ? Would it be prac- 
ticable to have the eggs delivered at domicile? How about 
* cracked eggs/ would allowance be made for them ? " and other 
similar minutiae, to all which queries the urbane proprietor of the 
establishment, who had a notion that he saw his way clear to a 
good stroke of business, having replied with eager obsequious- 
ness, the querist took up one egg, with deep gravity, wrapped it 
up in his handkerchief, and, putting down twopence on the 
counter, said impressively, " I take this one as a sample, you'll 
hear from me again ; " and, bowing politely, left the place, 
attended by his friend, ere the mystified owner could give vent to 
his indignation. 

Artemus Ward, the prince of humorists, positively revelled in 
what I think he was the first to dub a " goak." I remember, late 
one night in the fall of 1866, Artemus, dear little Jeff Prowse, and 
my humble self were left alone in the club-room at Ashley's. 
Artemus proposed an adjournment to the Alhambra. Prowse 
and self joyfully assented. Artemus asked Jeff to charter a cab. 
The vehicle soon drew up. It was a clear night, and the hotel 
and street-lamps shed a bright light, which gave us a full view of 
the driver's face. He was grave and stolid-looking, and evidently 
self-possessed. Artemus seemed to study the man's features for 
a brief moment ; then he intimated to me in a whisper that he 
was going to have a lark with cabby. Assuming his grave air, 
which sat so marvellously well on his face, he addressed the man 
in slow, measured accents. " My friend," he said, " you look to 
me a man of thought and experience, in fact, the very man likely 
to decide a most important and most difficult question which has 
arisen between me and my friend there," pointing to Jeff, who 
looked slightly puzzled. " Do you take me ? Will you be arbiter 
between us ? >; Cabby looked so dubious at first that I thought 
he was going to say, " Gammon, " or " Shut up," or something of 
the sort. However, so" wondrously intent did Artemus look, and 
so supernally grave was his manner, that the man's suspicions 
faded away from his face as snow will under a hot sun. He gave 



238 REMINISCENCES OF 

a half-grunt, then said briefly, " Fire away, guv'nor, let's know 
wat's all about." 

" Well," responded Artemus, with slow deliberateness, weigh- 
ing every word, apparently. " Well, look ye here now, my friend; 
that gentleman there " pointing again to Jeff Prowse, who, not 
knowing exactly how Charley might choose to compromise him 
with a mayhap irate Jehu, began to give slight signs of feeling 
rather uncomfortable "maintains that it is the divergence of 
contradictory opinions, which in the natural logical sequence of 
reasoning, and in the inferential conclusions of argumentation, 
must in the final end inevitably lead to convergence, and concord, 
and harmony among people, and bring about that most devoutly 
to be wished for consummation when man to man the world all 
o'er shall brethren be and a' that. I trust you follow me, my 
friend ? " 

"I follow you, guv'nor; fire away," said cabby briefly, who 
evidently was not quite clear yet what it all could possibly be 
about. 

"Now you see, my good fellow," pursued Artemus, with 
increased intentness of face, and graver ponderousness of manner 
and diction, " I, on the other part assert, and I mean to stick to 
it too, let gainsay who may " with a ferocious glare our way 
" that it is contrariwise and opposite, the convergence of con- 
current, concordant, and coincident opinions that must inevitably 
in its corollary and concomitant consequential train of its 
outcoming results lead to divergences, difficulties, and differ- 
ences" raising his voice to a higher pitch, and frantically 
sawing and beating the air with his outstretched right arm 
"which will make one man jump at another man's throat, and 
strive to strangle him to death ! " Then he proceeded more 
quietly "Now, my friend, you cannot but admit that I have 
placed the case fairly before you. Now, please give us your 
decision." 

Cabby, who had apparently listened with much serious atten- 
tion to this rigmarole, bent his head on one side, and, with one 
eye shut, gave Artemus the benefit of an inimitably droll look. 
Then he proceeded with gravity of manner equal to Ward's, and 
still more ponderous slowness of enunciation, to deliver himself 
of the following oracular decision, which would have done honour 
to great Busby himself: "Well, guv'nor, it is a notty pint 
and a 'ard nut to crack for the likes o' me, seein' as there is a 
great deal to be said on both sides ; and don't ye think, now, 
guv'nor, it's rayther a dry question to settle ? vich I know'd from 
the first, ye vos a gen'lman hevery hinch o' you, guv'nor." 
Having said which, he looked expectant. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 239 

"Sold!" cried Artemus, laughing, and jumping into the 
vehicle, followed by us. "You shall have your liquor, cabby. 
Drive on." 

" Where to ? " asked the man cheerfully, evidently rejoicing in 
the anticipation of a drink. 

" To the boundless Prairie ! " shouted Artemus. 

"Don't know no sich place about London," said cabby. 
^.Maybe ye'll tell me vich vay." 

"Alhambra way, then," responded Artemus; and to the 
Alhambra we were driven accordingly, where cabby was liberally 
treated to gin-sling, and dog's-nose, which seemed to be his 
special vanities. 

Alas ! a few brief months after, our gentle Artemus, who had 
so endeared himself to our Savage hearts, entered into the last 
.stage of his fatal malady. He was staying at Eadley's Hotel, 
Southampton. On February 13th, 1867, we received what un- 
happily turned out to be his dying words. " Sincere thanks," he 
telegraphed to us, in reply to a telegram of ours, " for your 
sympathy and good wishes. Am too weak to get to London. 
God bless you all." And barely had his gentle spirit fled, when 
there arose over his remains, that ought to have been held sacred 
by all of us, an unseemly wrangle. 

Sir George Cornewall Lewis used to say life would be bearable 
but for its amusements. It may with equal truth be said that 
life might be comparatively happy but for sectarian, social, and 
political zealots who want to force their own individual crazes down 
everybody else's throat. Sectarians, more especially, are apt to 
fancy that the Sublime Universal Spirit, the Father and Ruler of 
nil, must of necessity be of their own pet creed; upon such 
.people Volney's famous apologue of the Day of Judgment is 
simply thrown away. 

Dear Jeff Prowse ! 

It was in the early part of 1862, I think, when I first became 
acquainted with him. It was in Ludgate Hill. I accidentally 
met Tom Archer, then, as now, one of my dearest friends. There 
was a lithe little fellow with him, looking, every inch of him, a 
reduced-size edition of Henry Kingsley. This was Jeff Prowse, 
at that time simply a clerk in his uncle's notarial office. We 
passed about an hour together. I was absolutely enchanted with 
the ingenuous freshness of the young man, and charmed by his 
playful humour and the bright sparkle of his talk. 

Soon after he became a member of the club, which was then 
still in its happiest stage of delightful Bohemianism. In the 



240 REMINISCENCES OF 

briefest space of time he endeared himself to his brother Savages. 
He was a member of our little Bohemian set, not in name merely, 
in heart and soul and mind. True child of genius though he 
was, he did not find it very easy to gain admission to even the 
rank and file of literature. 

Just about this time the great London Exhibition of 1862 was 
on the point of opening. Jacobsen, the Dane, was an intimate 
friend of the editor of one of the leading Copenhagen papers of 
the day, who was most desirous of securing for his publication 
graphic accounts of the opening ceremony, and of the exhibition 
in general. Jacobsen consulted me upon the point, and I at once- 
suggested that young Prowse was the very boy to do the required 
work. So an arrangement was soon made. Prowse wrote bis 
articles in English, and Jacobsen and the editor looked to the 
translation. These papers by Prowse were the most charming 
literary productions it had been my good fortune to read for 
many long years. There was a youthful freshness about them 
that carried you positively away, and a vigour of style and 
elegance of diction which even the hastiest translation could 
not mar. This was Jeff's first formal introduction to literary 
work. 

At the worst period of the cotton famine, which was one of 
the most disastrous effects of the great Secession war of the 
then dis-United States of North America, a number of members 
of the Savage Club went to Manchester and Liverpool to give 
amateur performances in aid of the fund collecting for the relief 
of the suffering Lancashire operatives. There were the three 
then surviving brothers Brough William, John, and Lionel 
Frank Talfourd, William Eomer, Tegetmeier, Henry Byron r 
Leicester Buckingham, Jack Barnard, Charles Furtado, Edward 
Draper, Charles Millward, John Hollingshead, Andrew Halliday, 
Jeff Prowse, and myself. We had with us good, clever Mrs. 
Stirling, and Miss Louisa Laidlaw, then engaged at the Lyceum 
Theatre, and to young Weston, Manager Falconer's stepson.* At. 

* This young lady had been entrusted by her mamma to the care of 
Mr. Leicester Buckingham, who, however, managed to quarrel with her. 
The Mayor of Liverpool invited us all to a banquet, and permission was 
asked of Falconer, by telegraph, for Miss Laidlaw to stay. Falconer, in 
one of his tantrums, refused pointblank, insisting that her immediate 
presence on the boards of the Lyceum was indispensable. Now the lady 
had her maid with her, and Clarkson, the theatrical wig-maker, who had 
come down with us to Liverpool, was going back to London. However, 
nothing would do but I, of all men, must be pressed into the service to 
escort the young lady to London. A refusal might have been deemed 
unkind, and might have displeased Shirley Brooks, whom I liked much. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN-. ' 241 

a supper given to us at Manchester by the mayor and some 
members of the corporation, Jeff Prowse made a heart- stirring 
speech, which elicited enthusiastic applause. Prowse truly pos- 
sessed oratorical gifts of the highest order. Had he lived he 
might have become a bright ornament of the British senate. Sed 
Di8 aliter visum. Eheu I 

Not many months before his lamented decease, we received 
the subjoined letter from him, which characterises the man: 

" Villa Garin, Cimtes, Nice, France. 
" 1868. 6th May Massena, born 1758. 
Prowse, born 1836. 

"DEAR OLD MAN, Do you remember, by any chance, my 
name? An old member, sir, an old, old member. There were 
gay dogs in my time. There was Grattan Cooke, and there was 
Flinders, and there was Bensley, and there was Tommy Foster, 
and there was Tooby. Don't tell me, sir, about your young Leighs 
and stuff. There's not much wit or humour left now-a-days. By 
Jove, sir, I could tell you stories of Bensley's repartees that 
would make you stand aghast, sir, in every sense of the word 
literally stand aghast. Then there was Sussex Milbank, egad! 
and all the lords of the land. Why, we started a periodical 
amongst us, and called it Caiman's Magazine. It sold like wild- 
fire, and the proprietor a very nice fellow called Burroughs 
realised a princely fortune. Then, there was Buott ; he used to 
keep the table in a roar, a positive roar. Why, we gave a banquet 
and to this day I cannot quite make out how pome of us managed 
to pay for our tickets to the whole Press of Europe and America ; 
and one of us I forget his name was subsequently taken into 
custody for assaulting a policeman. On second thoughts, I have 
it ; he was named Strowse. 

" On my birthday, ages ago, I generally had a few Savages 

Charles Millward promised me to do his best. He pretended that no 
.free pass could be got for me, and I breathed again. I was just taking 
leave of Miss Laidlaw, with hypocritical expressions of deep regret, 
when Hollingshead, who must have been afraid I might be insane enough 
to pay my fare, rather than forego the delight of a trip to London in 
society of a charming young lady, rushed up with a free pass. I blessed 
him in my heart, which may account for his prosperity, as everything 
goes contrary with me. So I had the pleasure of travelling in the same 
compartment with the young lady, who was studying her part all the 
way, and of listening to Mr. Clarkson's theatrical reminiscences. What 
made the matter the more annoying to me was, that Miss Laidlaw really 
was not wanted at all. I told Falconer a bit of my mind that evening, 
and made him stand a substantial supper, to indemnify me for the loss 
of the Liverpool banquet. 



242 REMINISCENCES OF 

about meabout the only thing that I had about me ! and I 
can't let the day pass even now without sending a collective 
message of goodwill and friendly remembrance through you to 
all of the circle who are left. 

" I am not well posted up in London gossip, but I think I 
have heard the chief items of intelligence concerning our own 
set: e.g. 

" I. That Eobertson, having grown tired of the drama, preaches 
every Sunday in a Baptist Chapel at Balham Hill. 

" II. That you have accepted the editorship of the Athenceum. 

"III. That Tom Archer has taken to drink and beats his 
wife. 

" IY. That William Eomer has opened a dancing academy at 
Kensington. 

" V. That Godfrey Turner has become a vegetarian, and writes 
ungrammatically. 

" VI. That Leigh is ruining his health by incessant application 
to work, 

"VII. That Tegetmeier has become a comic singer at the 
' Great Mogul ' in Drury Lane. 

" VIII. That Jack Brough has accepted the chairmanship of a 
Stockwell Branch of the Conservative Land Society. 

" IX. That Quin is secretary to an association for closing all 
places of public entertainment at eleven o'clock. 

" X. That Jacobsen is employed by the same society to keep 
Quin from going to bed too early. 

" XI. That Walter Thornbury dances at the Alhambra under 
the nom de jarribe of Finette. 

" XII. That Millward has again been figuring in the Divorce 
Court. 

" XIII. That Hannay has gone into trade. 

"XIV. That Brunton has joined the Church of Eome. 

" XV. That Barnes has accepted an engagement as keeper of 
the umbrellas at the Boyal Academy. This 6th May is likewise 
the birthday of Barnes. Give him my love, and tell him to take 
great care of the umbrellas. If he makes himself useful to the 

academicians, who knows but that in time he himself Well, 

well! 

"XVI. That Jonas Levy, scorning to become an applicant 
for parochial relief, has opened a coddam hell at Kingagate 
Castle. 

"XVII. That Lionel Brough rides * Eosicrucian ' in the 
Derby. 

"XVIII. That William Brough has shaved. N.B. I don't 
quite believe this ! 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 243 

" XIX. That John Hollingshead is writing a life of Shelley in 
the Spenserian stanza. 

" XX. That James Macdonell is to be the new editor of the 
Quarterly Review. 

" XXI. That Andrew Halliday has eloped with little Bm'ly. 
N.B. This I don't quite understand. I always took Andrew to 
be such a very steady file ! and 

" Vingt-deux. That Edward Draper was the real culprit in the 
Clerkenwell explosion. Well, well ! Draper always was as fond 
of a blow-up as G. T. of a blow-out. How very strange that he t 
of all men, should turn vegetarian ! 

" Should any of these statements be incorrect, perhaps you or 
some one else will kindly let me know. 

" I see Porcupine every week. You have no idea how pleasant 
it is to see Porcupine in a foreign land. Porcupine tells me that 
the Savage Club has been having its annual dinner. Ah, cruel 
Savages ! how could you eat 'and I far away o'er the billows'? 
I wonder it didn't choke you, heartless gluttons ! Perhaps it 
did; perhaps that may account for my never having had a line 
from a single member except Archer and Archer, they say, has 
taken to drink and beats his wife. I used, do you know, to look 
on Archer as rather a steady man than otherwise ; but we are all 
liable to be deceived. 

" Nothing is yet positively made known to me about my 
return, but I expect to be home about the first week in June. I 
am sure you and many other dear friends will be glad to hear 
that only two days ago, after a long medical examination, the 
doctor pronounced me wonderfully better, and gave me hopes 
not only of a few years' more life in this crippled invalided state, 
but of real recovery and of restoration to health and strength. 
I must ask you to give my warmest remembrance to ' the dear 
boys.' I don't expect letters from busy men ; but if anybody 
has a spare half-hour on a rainy day, and will fillip a drop of ink 
in my direction, I shall be glad of any news. 

" Ever yours most sincerely, 

" W. J. PROWSE." 



Alas ! the bright hopes raised in the dear boy's mind by his 
physician were doomed to prove deceptive. Jeff had a truly 
marvellous stock of vitality in him, which misled even me occa- 
sionally to entertain a faint hope of his partial recovery at least, 
though I never could be so sanguine as his physician at Nice 
was. The small enfeebled frame of the man had fought for 
several years an almost incredibly desperate fight with the dread 

i: 2 



V 244 REMINISCENCES OF 

disease that was consuming it, and it held off for some months 
longer the grip of death fastening on it. But the inevitable end 
came for all that. Prdwse was carried off ere the completion of 
his thirty-third year. In him the club lost one of its most genial 
members, the republic of letters one of its most gifted citizens, 
the Daily Telegraph the most brilliant writer that ever wielded 
pen in its service, and I, and many, many others, one of the 
kindest, truest, and best of friends. 

A bitter, bitter pity indeed that this bright child of genius 
should ever haw been yoked to the dull routine car of a notarial 
office ; and as great a pity almosb that the rich, the surprisingly 
rich treasures of his original mind should have been permitted to 
be drunk up by the arid sands of ephemeral journalism. His 
creation of " Nicholas," the old Tipster, with which he for a time 
irradiated the pages of Fun, is there to show what great things 
he might have achieved in a higher and nobler walk of literature. 
His imitative writings were truly inimitable. He caught the 
very spirit, the very turn of mind, the minutest peculiarities of 
diction and style, of the writers whom he so playfully imitated. 
I verily believe that Thackeray and Dickens would have been 
sorely puzzled by the productions of his pen audaciously put 
forth as their handiwork. Poor William Dalton had, among his 
tales for boys, written one entitled " Phalcon ; the Ship-boy who 
became an Admiral." Jeff produced a most extraordinarily close 
and most amusing imitation of this, entitled " Falconer ; the Call- 
boy who became a Manager." It was intensely good-natured, 
but I have reason to believe that both Dalton and Falconer felt 
much disposed to cry over it. In very sooth, Prowse was an 
improved edition of the two Smiths of the " Bejected Addresses'^ 
joined together. How Tie could write, ye gods ! In May, 1866, 1 
was engaged on the Daily Telegraph. One evening, when I was 
ponderously composing a ponderous article on the European 
crisis, news was brought into the office that a pleasure steamer 
had gone down somewhere near the Tower, with one thousand' 
souls on board ! Poor Prowse was lying ill at the time in Camber- 
well. Newspapers cannot afford bowels of compassion. The little 
man was " sent for " to Fleet Street. He came ill and dejected. 
No matter ! He sat down in the very room in which I was writing 
the reporters' room and there and then wrote, currente calamo, 
one of the most surprising articles on the catastrophe which it 
has ever been my good fortune to read an article that moved 
and stirred you to the innermost depths of your heart and your 
feelings, yet was not one whit emotional or sensational. He 
wrote powerfully, as he felt powerfully. The news turned out to 
be a hoax, set afloat by some mischievous idiotic knave, and 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 245 

spread like wildfire all over London by a set of idiotic fools. 
When the reporters who had been sent to the supposed scene of 
the alleged disaster returned with the news that there was not a 
scintilla of truth in the statement, Jeff rose with a face positively 
radiant, tore up his article, and, bursting into tears, cried in 
joyful accents of heartfelt gratitude, "Thank God! thank God! 
it is not true ! thank God ! " 

Prowse was entirely free from that most objectionable foible 
of but too many English people rudely to notice defects in the 
English pronunciation of those who may not have attuned their 
organs of speech from their first childhood to the vernacular 
accents. There were some members of our own set who could 
hardly ever abstain from pointing out to me any slight slip in 
that way of which I might be guilty, or even from mimicking 
me. One of these gentlemen, more especially, a right good fellow 
in the main, himself more than slightly given to cockney pro- 
nunciations, and rather doubtful in his style and diction, was apt 
to be down upon me on the very slightest provocation. On one 
occasion, when he was indulging a little over-offensively in this 
favourite pastime of his, little Jeff came down upon him with the 
sledge-hammer. " I like that," cried he ; " ha ! ha ! it is rich ! 
You make fun of the old man's pronunciation you who drop 
your h's and pick them up again promiscuously you who mix 
your v's and w's in charming confusion you who would be 
puzzled were you put to acquiring the merest rudiments of 
the easiest foreign tongue, and who cannot, for the life of you, 
ever put together a page of English without running your pen 
against some canon of composition ! Leave the old man's pecu- 
liarities of pronunciation alpne and attend to your own ! " I have 
said the offending party was a right good fellow in the main. 
He never after, by any chance, made another disparaging remark 
upon my way of tonguing the vernacular. 

Walter Lacy was present one evening at a certain theatrical 
performance, when he chanced to meet a well-known manager, of 
whom he expected an engagement at the time. A lady was on 
the stage performing. " What do you think of her as an 
actress ? " queried the manager. Walter, who had never seen 
the lady before, and knew nothing of her pedigree, but heard her 
playing the very deuce with the aspirate, replied, rather incau- 
tiously, " Think of her as an actress ? an actress, indeed ! Egad, 
sir, she drops her h's so that you can hear them rattle on the 
boards. She ought to have a maid after her with a broom and a 
dustpan to sweep them up." The manager left him with an 
ominously sounding "Ha! hem!" A friend of Lacy's coming 
up told the disagreeably surprised actor that the lady on the 



246 REMINISCENCES OF 

stage was the daughter of the gentleman who had just left him.. 
" There goes my engagement ! " cried Walter ; and he turned out 
a true prophet. 

That "William Bomer has opened a dancing academy at 
Kensington," was among the chief items of intelligence which 
Jeff Prowse professed to have learned concerning our own set. 
The fearful flight of fancy involved in this fanciful statement of 
fanciful Jeff could be duly estimated only by those who knew 
poor Bill intimately. Bill taking to dancing ! and to the teaching 
of " such effeminacy," as he would have dubbed it. 

Poor William Eomer ! He was one of my dearest friends. 
He was one of the most upright and downright and straight- 
forward fellows I ever knew. He never would " mince matters " 
with any one. 

I remember, when the "play-acting" committee of the club 
went to Liverpool and Manchester to perform for the benefit of 
the Lancashire operatives suffering from the dire effects of the- 
cotton famine, Bill and I had to do the two red demons intro- 
duced in the opening scene of the newest version of " Valentine- 
and Orson," elaborated for the occasion by the dramatic authors 
of the club, including Byron, Talfourd, William Brough, and 
Leicester Buckingham. 

Well, said red demons had to sing a few lines viz. : 

Chip, chop! Chip, chop! 
Till sufficient we lop 
To cook the chump chop 
Of Orchobrand. 

There ought to have been four red demons, but we ran short 
of the article; so two had to do the work. It was distinctly 
understood that I was not to sing. I am sorry to say there has 
always been somehow an envious feeling in people about my 
sweet voice, and I have but rarely been permitted to make patent 
to the world my latent talent in that line. Here I thought my 
opportunity had come; and of course I tried to avail myself of 
the lucky chance. But I had reckoned without my Bill, who 
pulled me up hard at my second " Chip," just when my voice was 
gaining power. 

" Stop your d d caterwauling, doctor, or I throw my axe at 

you ! " he shouted, quite loud enough to be heard in the orchestra 
and pit. 

Of course I had to give way to the envious fellow's injunc- 
tion, and to sing on in dumb show. Well, well 1 I am of a for- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 247 

giving disposition. I do not bear malice to poor Bill's memory 
for having choked my sweet utterances on that occasion. 

There was a strange tradition floating about that William 
Eomer had once upon a time been several Old Masters, in the 
employ and interest of a respectable picture dealer somewhere 
about Wardour Street or Princes Street ; but that on one occa- 
sion, when he had just finished a splendid Giorgione, a horrible 
temptation had come upon him, and had overcome him, to scribble 
in a small corner of the " Old Master-piece," Quilielmus Eomer 
pinxitj anno 18 , which a noble connoisseur, just ready to 
pay five hundred pounds for the picture, having timely or un- 
timely, as one may like to take it accidentally spotted, had 
spoiled the sale, and had exasperated the dealer into a summary 
dismissal of the Old Master. I onee delicately hinted to Bill that 
I should like to know what truth there was in this rumour ; but 
he shut me up by hinting a little less delicately that I had better 
mind my own business. 

Be this as it may, poor Bill Homer possessed all the where- 
withal great artists achieve success except success. He painted 
a little genre picture, yclept " Father's Dinner," which really was 
sweetly pretty, but fell simply dead for lack of luck. Fortune is 
an unreasoning jade, who takes capricious likes and dislikes, and 
seems to bear a rooted antipathy to all dwellers in stony Bohemia. 
"Whenever she makes an exception, and bestows her favour upon 
one of the proscribed, she somehow in exchange alters his mind 
and disposition, so that when he has once passed out of the con- 
fines of the barren land, he strives to forget, even to the remem- 
brance of the kindly fellows who, mayhap, had sympathisingly 
taken part in bis woes, and generously shared their poor joys and 
pleasures with him, when he was one of them. 

Had Bill but had a studio and a connection out of Bohemia 
he might have flourished as a portrait painter. He did excel- 
lent likenesses of Frank Talfourd, Eobert B. Brough, and others, 
for scant remuneration, of course, there being no demand for 
high-priced productions in this line from an obscure artist's 
pencil and brush. 

Even as it was, William Eomer had a few patrons who would 
occasionally employ him to paint portraits for them Jonas Levy, 
for instance, and Thomas Spencer, two excellent fellows who had 
casually strayed into Bohemia and loved to hospitate there. 
William had a good voice, but he was somehow wondrously shy 
of showing forth in public. I never knew him sing but one song 
* Then let me like a soldier fall, upon some well-fought field." 
And even this he gave up for ever at least, as far as my personal 
knowledge goes when Charles Kerrison Sala (Wynn) wrote a 



248 REMINISCENCES OF 

parody upon it, in a most amusing skit of his, entitled " The 
Fish." As far as I can call to mind, this parody ran somewhat 
after the following fashion : 

Then let me like a flounder fall, 

Upon some well-greased dish ; 
Though egg and bread-crumb prove my pall, 

I'll perish like a fish! 

Though round my sides no oysters gleam, 

Nor truffles deck my shell, 
A myriad minnows still shall scream, 

" He like a flounder fell ! " 

Then let me ask of that proud dace, 

That wags his tail at me, 
To fry for me, and not disgrace 

The monarch of the sea, etc. 

Charles Kerrison Sala was wondrously clever, and a right 
good fellow to boot. Robert Brough, in his quaint way, said 
Charles was overlaid by une fraternite ecrasante ; and there was 
much truth in the saying. Had anyone but George Augustus 
been his brother, he might have achieved a brilliant literary 
reputation. Many a time when I have been in his company I 
have heard whole strings of pearls drop from his mouth. I think 
a few copies of " The Fish " were printed for private circulation. 
One of these copies, I know, was presented to the late Charles 
Dickens, who wrote to the author that seldom had a skit amused 
him so much. There were notes to it, supplied by George 
Augustus, Sutherland Edwards, John Bridgman, myself, and 
some others. I remember one of the notes, by George Augustus, 
was an alleged quotation from Madame de Sevigne " Quant au 
poisson, je m'en fiche." The lines 



" Piscis " is my Latin name ; 

The English style of " Fish " I claim 

were annotated by me with a pretended quotation from a pre- 
tended poem, "De Piscibus marinis ac fluviatilibus," brazenly 
imputed to poor Bavius and Maavius, from which " classic " pro- 
duction I asserted Charles Kerrison had obviously pirated the 
splendid lines 

Est mihi " piscis " nomen Latinum. 
'lX0vf quern GraBci appellant. 



OLD BOHEMIAN. 249 

The Fish, singing these lines, was made to enter on horseback, 
sideways. He was received by a chorus of fishes singing 

The Fish, the Fish, the Fish! 

His head, his fins, his scales, 

By right the Prince of Whales, 

And of the Duchy of Cornwall, too, etc. 

Among the dramatis peraonce figured Tub, a person employed 
to clean the pan in which the poor fish was to be fried when 
caught, and Louisa the tittlebat, who sang 

When first I met my darling Tub, 

I took him for a man ; 
I never thought that he would scrub 

A greasy frying pan," etc. 

Then there was a duet between Mr. Cheeks, the fish-tackle 
merchant of Oxford Street, and a disreputable party whom he 
bribed to catch the fish. Some of the lines of this duet ran 

Would you like to catch a pike, catch a pike ? 
Then come with me to the Devil's Dyke, 
Where you your pike shall catch with a hook. 

Voice of Carp, in the distance : 

He speaks like a book. 

There was another duet which I think I remember. The fish 
in the frying pan sang 

I'm hooked, I'm hookod, 
I'm booked, I'm booked, 
Half-oooked, half-cooked. 

John, an angel, in the employ of the Excise, upsetting the pan 
and saving the fish 

For my approach you never looked. 

The head of Charles Kean was introduced rolling across the 
stage, saying 

Edden adways said it would come to this. 

This is about all I can call to mind of that quaint little 
production. 



250 BEMINISCENCES OF 

Once upon a time Bohemia Londinensis resolved to give a 
theatrical performance for the special behoof and benefit of the 
good and true Bohemian William Eomer, disguised for the nonce 
in the pseudonym of Patterson. 

So the Eoyalty, in Dean Street, Soho, was hired for the 
occasion, and a rich variorum dish of entertainments placed in 
prospective before the British public : among others the council 
chamber scene from "Othello," with the great como-tragedian 
Robert Eomer, of the Theatre Eoyal, Adelphi, in the character of 
the Moor, for this special occasion only; " Cool as a Cucumber " ; 
" Sensations after a dose of Hachich, narrated by a distinguished 
member of the Eeunion," etc. 

The beneficiary of the evening was to deliver a short set 
speech at the end of the performance something simply to the 
effect that he heartily thanked the ladies and gentlemen present 
for their kind patronage on this occasion. Bill, who could 
sensibly talk upon most subjects, and would never foolishly talk 
on any, had an almost unconquerable objection to speak in public ; 
and it was necessary, therefore, to give him as brief a speech as 
possible to deliver. On the morning of the eventful day I found 
the dear fellow pacing the boards in absolute abstraction, seem- 
ingly, from the outer world, and all-engrossed by the stupendous 
task of committing to memory the words of his speech. His 
brother-in-law, "William Brough, came to break in upon his 
absorption with a simple stage direction, to wit, " Bill, you come 
in right entrance, not left." Bill was taken aback sadly by this 
fresh demand upon his mnemonic powers. " Goodness gracious ! " 
he cried, with a comic look of despair, " here is more hard study 
forme!" 

On the night of the performance the club occupied the boxes 
of the Eoyalty in full force Halliday, Tegetmeier, Jonas Levy, 
Furtado, James Lowe, the Broughs, Tom Eobertson, Quin, Harry 
Angel, Gus Mayhew, Charley Millward, George Grossmith, and a 
host of others, including my humble self. Edward Draper, 
George Cruikshank, James Kenney, and other members had 
kindly volunteered to take the stage, doing Brabantio, The Duke, 
lago, Eoderigo, officers, senators, etc. 

We in the boxes had laid in a stock of tokens of approbation 
in the guise of a whole sackful of various vegetables procured at 
Covent Garden market, which we dispensed with a liberal hand 
in the course of the evening, as the performance proceeded to our 
greater or lesser satisfaction. 

When the como-tragedian, Bob Eomer, delivered his address 
to the "most potent, grave, and reverend signiors," the boxes 
opened a running fire of comment upon his averments, as they 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 251 

fell in slow, measured, perhaps rather slightly ponderous accents 
from his lips. Thus, for instance : 

Othello Romer: "That I have ta'en away this old man's 
daughter, it is most true " 

Soxes : " For shame, Bob ! Couldn't have believed it of you." 
Jonas Levy : " I'll tell your wife, Bob ! " 

0. R. : " True, I have married her-" 

Soxes : " You durst not, Bob it is rank bigamy ! " 

0. R. : " Rude am I in my speech " 

Boxes: "Do not say that, Bob. Polished you are, not 
rude." 

And so on through the entire scene, to the intense amazement 
and, I am afraid, somewhat to the annoyance of the B. P. in the 
other parts of the house, who evidently could not see the fun of 
the double performance. 

Altogether I have an uncomfortable feeling now that we of 
Bohemia and of the club bore ourselves more like overgrown 
schoolboys out on a spree than like grave, sedate men. But no 
matter : dulce est desipere in loco, which I would freely translate, 
" it is a sweet thing to play the fool in a playhouse." 

Still, with all these little drawbacks, the performance went off 
altogether in a most satisfactory way. The distinguished member 
of the Reunion gave us a description of his sensations after a 
dose of hachich in such vivid fashion that we verily took him to 
be still actually under the action of the drug. We rewarded him 
with many vegetable marks of appreciation, a whole cabbage 
among other things, thrown by James Lowe, of the Critic, which 
he nimbly avoided, and looked for a time very much inclined to 
send back to the generous donor. 

To wind up, the beneficiary had forgotten his speech, and 
came on and went off with a silent bow. 

Well, well ! I have in the course of a pretty long life assisted 
at many eccentric performances and theatrical riots ; but I never 
before or after witnessed anything even remotely approaching to 
this, which was truly unique in its way. 

William Romer was a thoroughly good-hearted fellow. Ifc 
would occasionally happen that a denizen of Bohemia would be 
raised to the dignity of a Queen's bencher. Sympathising Bill 
would almost always be sure to visit and comfort him in his 
temporary retirement ; and comfort under such conditions would 
generally include the conveyance of a small quantity of brandy or 
whisky, etc., into the Bench, which was held to be against the 
statute made and provided, etc. Bill looked so single-minded and 
so innocent on all occasions of such visits of comfort that he 



252 REMINISCENCES OF 

would hardly ever be questioned even whether he had any 
prohibited articles in his pockets. 

On one occasion, however, when a dear friend of his and mine 
had taken up his abode in her Majesty's Southwark Palace, Bill 
had been " informed upon," it would appear, by some vile lick- 
spittle wretch who wanted to curry favour with the powers that 
were. 

Bill was a great favourite with most of the warders, and one 
of them gave him a hint. 

. Next morning Bill and I went on our usual charitable errand 
to the Bench. Bill took a nip of whisky on the way.* When we 
came to the port of our destination, we were asked, somewhat 
sternly, had we any spirits upon us ? I cheerfully replied in the 
negative ; but, to my intense astonishment, Bill, hanging out a 
guilty look, confessed that ho had spirits about him. The redoubt- 
able Captain Hudson, the Governor of the Colony of Bancus 
Begins, soon appeared on the scene. He asked Bill, sternly, to 
produce the spirits. The culprit replied simply that he could 
not, whereupon the captain had him searched. No spirits of any 
kind being found upon him, the irate governor shouted angrily 
to Romer, "Where are the spirits, sir?" Bill, who could be 
intensely comical, cast one Of his drollest looks upon the mystified 
captain, and placing his right hand on his epigastric region, 
uttered the monosyllable " here." To say that Hudson was wroth 
would be a mild way of expressing the man's exasperation. He 
was rarely riled and more than slightly inclined to say rude 
things ; but William, who could always take care of his dignity, 
soon brought the angry governor to a calmer state of mind by a 
few words of gentle but firm remonstrance. The upshot even 
was that Bill seemingly got thenceforth a bill of immunity granted 
him ; for, I think, he never was asked again at the Bench whether 
he had any spirits about him. 

* This was quite against Bill Romer's drinking practice, as he was 
emphatically a beer drinker. Sala, that truly Protean genius, when on 
his Journey Due North, in 1856, sent to the Train a song in praise of 
" Caviar and Rudesheimer," which he called " Carmen Stettinense," ifc 
having been written in Stettin. One of the stanzas of the poem ran 
this wise : 

The King of Prussia drinks champagne ; 
Old Person drank whate'er was handy ; 
Maginn drank gin, Judge Blackstone port, 

And many famous wits drink brandy ; 
Stern William Romer drinketh beer, 

And so does Tennyson the Rhymer ; 
And I'll renounce all liquors for 
My Caviar and Rudesheimer. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 253 

Shirley Brooks, a genial fellow, over-apt, perhaps, to stand a 
little too much upon his dignity, used during one of his temporary 
eclipses as who, Swell and Bohemian alike, has not experienced 
them in the course of a chequered career ? to frequent a small 
a-la-mode beef shop not a hundred miles from the purlieus of 
Clare Market, over which a very civil damsel was then presiding. 
Halliday, Bill Homer, Fred Lawrence, and my humble self, who 
all of us had at that very time a strong liking for the rich four- 
penny plates of the succulent commodity served out to customers 
at that then famous restaurant, happened to pop in there one day 
when Shirley had just left rather shyly we thought. As he 
went in an opposite direction he had not seen us. When we had 
" dined," and were leaving the place in our turn, Bill civilly asked 
the civil damsel, had Mr. Brooks been there? and upon her 
replying in the affirmative, begged her to give Mr. Brooks the 
joint affectionate regards of Mr. Eomer, of the Eoyal Academy, 
Mr. Thackeray, Mr. Dickens, and Mr. Wilkie Collins, who 
all hoped his dinners agreed with him. The simple-minded 
damsel, not trusting to her memory, took the names down in 
writing, and next day delivered her message properly to Mr. 
Brooks, who, much nettled thereat, most unkindly sent us to 
blazes, I am sorry to relate. Since that day the a-la-mode beef 
shop saw him no more ; at least, so Bill was informed by the 
damsel in reply to his reiterated affectionate inquiries after the 
health and well-being of our dear friend Mr. Shirley Brooks. 

Bill Eomer figures in Eobert Brough's " Marston Lynch " a/ 
Thomas C lough. It is a capital sketch of that true Bohemian 
and sterling good fellow whom we all loved, and who, like so- 
many more of my dearest friends, has long since gone aloft. Alas ! 
I cannot even conscientiously say alas ! for his lines in life had 
not fallen in pleasant places, and death must have appeared to 
him rather as a friend than otherwise. 

Eobert Eomer, a genial fellow in the main, and rather dis- 
posed to take life easy, was yet occasionally given to melancholy 
musings and dark views upon things in general and his own 
affairs in particular. Halliday and myself found him one day 
in one of these dyspeptic fits of the mind. " Ah ! " he said, in 
reply to our solicitous inquiries, "ah! I am one of the most 
unlucky of mortals. Nothing succeeds with me. Only fancy, a 
few days ago I started in the toy and sweet-stuff line, and, egad ! 
ever since the children all around my place seem to have forsworn 
spinning-tops and brandy-balls." 



254 REMINISCENCES OF 

Bob Komer was a devoted student of some of the more abstruse 
sciences. I met him one day skipping along in rather juvenile 
fashion. "Halloa, Bob!" I cried to him; " what's the matter 
with you, my young friend ? Why, you trip it as lightly and 
nimbly as Mercury." Bob stopped short, gave me a look of 
unfathomable meaning, then said, slowly and impressively: 
" Mercury ! hem ! water boils at the poles there where here, on 
our earth, it freezes. Singular ! isn't it P " And, with another 
deep look, he left me to ponder upon the curious problem of such 
a most remarkable difference between these two distinguished 
members of the solar system. 

On another occasion Halliday and myself happened to stumble 
upon Bob when he was most attentively watching the working of 
a!chocolate-making machine in Holborn. When he became aware 
of our presence, he slowly turned to us, and, pointing his finger 
to the revolving crusher, exclaimed in a portentous voice, the 
single word, "centrifugal," then went on his way, apparently 
lost, like Chrononhotonthologos, in a " cogibundity of cogitation." 
I met Bob one day in Maiden Lane. It was after the death of 
Miss Eomer, who had left him in her will, if not exactly a 
thumping legacy, perhaps, still something comparatively hand- 
some. The lucky legatee had just received a letter from France, 
which he asked me to translate for him. It was from a theatrical 
biographist, asking for particulars of the deceased artist's career, 
as he intended to bring out a sketch of her life in his publication. 
Mr. Robert Romer was enchanted. He disparagingly compared 
the brief lukewarm obituaries that had appeared in some English 
papers with what this French gentleman professed himself willing, 
nay, eager to do. There was a rider to the letter, intimating that 
it was always customary for the surviving relatives of any subject 
of a biographic sketch to subscribe five hundred copies for private 
circulation among friends, etc., and requesting that the sum of 
two hundred and fifty francs (10 English money) should be 
forwarded to the office of the publication, together with particulars 
of life, etc. 

I slyly glanced at Bob whilst reading this out to him, and I 
saw how his face changed ; for a mild man, as he unquestionably 
was, he looked absolutely fierce. 

"Cursed French idiot! swindler! "he cried in angry tones; 
"does he take me for a fool? Don't want his trash. Knows 
nothing of late Miss Romer, I'll be bound. Trade upon the 
dead ! dirty ! Ten pounds, indeed ! Not a blessed farthing ! " 
And snatching the letter from my hand, he furiously tore it into 
bits, and danced upon the pieces, to the intense amazement of 
George Honey, who was casually passing by, but had to stop to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 255 

listen to the indignant Adelphian's fierce objurgations and charges 
against the unlucky Frenchman, who had conceived the atrocious 
design of getting money out of him. 

There was a Bohemian* in our set who had a wonderful dog, 
of which he was marvellously fond. This noble animal would 
spurn any article of food less appetising than choice tit-bits of 
best meat, and his noble master would indulgently procure for 
him, at merely nominal prices, indeed, a constant supply of such 
-til-bits from a few butchers who knew his touching love for his 
canine friend. So much is this world given to scandal, that there 
were monsters in human shape found sufficiently depraved to 
declare that this dog, which, by-the-bye, nobody had ever seen, 
was a mere myth, invented to supply the astute Bohemian with 
cheap food. 

Years ago, when I was at Paris with Robert Brough, we made 
the acquaintance of an American gentleman of the name of 
Klapp, who had a passion for pipes. We went often with him, 
on purchasing thoughts intent, to a pipe-shop on the Boulevard 
'du Temple, where a large poster in the window informed a 
sympathising public that the proprietor of the establishment, a 
M. Peltier, had unhappily been carried off by death, leaving a 
widow with three small children unprovided for, and that said 
widow, in the name of self and said unhappy orphans, humbly 
begged to solicit the custom of a generous ipublic. Klapp, being 
generous and most kindhearted, considered himself in common 
humanity bound to respond to the appeal, and made nearly all 
his purchases of pipes there. Thus it happened that we became 
acquainted with the manager of the business, a gentleman of the 
name of Louis, a charming, chatty little fellow, with twinkling 
black eyes, and a most humorous cast of countenance, and 
wondrously sympathetic and emotional withal, as we had often 
occasion to remark when we got more intimately acquainted with 
him, and he was talking to us of the widow and the three orphans 
of his late employer, of whom he could hardly ever speak without 
the " teardrops gathering in his e'en." 

" Ah, ce brave Peltier ! un ccaur d'or, Messieurs, une ame 
veritablement sdraphique!" he would cry, with a choking sob 
in his voice. And he would never tire to chant the praises of 
the widow "une brave femme, Messieurs, si jamais il en fut, 
et tres belle, et qui aimait bien son rnari;" and the charming 
sweetness of the orphans, two little girls and a boy, aged re- 
spectively eight, seven, and six "des anges, Messieurs, de veri- 

* I have heard it said Bob Homer was the man. 



256 REMINISCENCES OF 

tables cherubins; et qui m'aiment, Messieurs, comme si j'etais 
leur pere, Messieurs;" and then he would tell us long stories 
of their sweet childish ways that would make us actually Jong to 
embrace them. Dear Eobert Brough, who had room in his large 
heart for sympathy with the wide world, was often moved to 
tears by the man's simple pathos. 

Strange enough, however, we never, by any chance, met the 
interesting widow, or any of her sweet olive branches. 

Now, Klapp, like most Americans, was of an inquisitive turn 
of mind; he "wanted to know" a great many things, and he 
ardently wished for a sight of the widow and the orphans whom 
he was befriending to the full extent of his purse and of his 
fancy for pipes. M. Louis, however, always knew how to account 
in the simplest manner for the absence of the widow and the 
children. 

One evening, after closing hours, we Klapp, Eobert Brough, 
and I invited M. Louis to take la goutte with us. He cheerfully 
accepted, and in the course of a couple of hours he took a great 
many " drops" with us, so many drops, indeed, that he was 
growing more and more communicative with every fresh drop, 
and was fast nearing the stage when people have an unconquer- 
able tendency to talk of their relations. This was the time the 
wretch Klapp chose for pumping the poor man. Of course, it 
was the old question of the widow and the orphans, and Klapp 
wanted to extort a solemn promise that we should be introduced 
to them in propriis personis. M. Louis, pushed to his last en- 
trenchments, said at last, with a comical look at us, and an irre- 
pressible merry twinkle in his eyes : " Eh bien, Messieurs, si 
vous voulez absolument savoir le fin mot de 1'affaire : feu Peltier 
c'est moi ; la veuve c'est encore moi ; et les trois orphelins 
c'est toujours moi !" 

He then told us how he had tried hard to succeed in his 
business of pipe-maker, but how all his efforts to find a sale for 
the productions of his labour and skill had proved unavailing, 
until a " happy thought " had led him to die in the pseudonym 
of Peltier, leaving a desolate young wife and three orphans 
behind him. 

"Yous voyez bien, Messieurs," he said, with an inimitably 
droll look, " on est tou jours bien plus porte a avoir des sym- 
pathies pour une veuve a orphelins que meme pour un pere de 
famille, done a plus forte raison, pour un celibataire ; et moi, je 
n'ai jamais voulu me marier, de crainte de ne laisser apres moi 
une veritable veuve a veritables orphelins car on me dit que je 
suis poitrinaire." 

Poor M. Louis. Some four years after, when I was once 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 257 

again in Paris, I called at the well-remembered old shop. Klapp 
had gone back to America long before then, and my dear Eoberb 
had been laid to rest in a quiet cemetery in Manchester. Alas ! 
there is barely a place I ever passed through on my long pilgrimage 
but reveals to my mind's eye some mortuary cross marking the 
spot where some one I knew and loved lies buried. 

Well, I called at the old shop. It was shut up, with a bill 
in the window, " Boutique k louer. S'adresser au concierge." 
Poor M. Louis had died of consumption about a month before, as 
I was informed by his only brother, who had laid his mortal 
remains among the six years' concessions in Pere Lachaise in 
the same grave with " feu Peltier, la veuve, et les trois orphelins." 
And I cannot even say now, Sit terra levis ; for long, long since 
these poor remains of the man whom I had known so full of life, 
and so overflowing with richest humour, have been carted away 
for manure. Oh, the wondrous mystery of life and death 
and of death and life ! 

Years after, in 1867, I went on a certain day to the Pere 
Lachaise I am an inveterate cemetery hunter in company with 
my dear friends Jacobsen and Walter Thornbury. I wished to 
show them, especially the latter, who was rather apt at the time 
to display an exaggerated admiration of everything Trench, that 
there are certain things which they do not order better in France 
than in other lands, more particularly in England. 

The short concessions were just at the time in one of the 
periodical full clearances, and God's acre was being duly ploughed, 
and death's garden put in spruce trim. Jacobsen and Thornbury 
were both surprised and shocked when they saw the broken 
monumental crosses and slabs, etc., lying about in all directions, 
and the gravediggers hard at work digging up the rudera of the 
decayed and decaying " temples of God," and the carters equally 
busy carting them away to " fresh grounds and diggings new." 
This is the religio mortis, as understood and practised by the 
French ; unless, indeed, one is in a position to make a heavy out- 
lay for a concession a perpetuite, when one's perishable part will 
be permitted to decay away undisturbed in the same spot, and 
some grand monument may tell ages to come what a phcanix of 
virtue and goodness and all noble and exalted qualities one was 
during one's pilgrimage on earth. Faugh ! Equality is one of 
the great catchwords of the great nation. Yet they will not even 
permit the levelling of death and the equality of the grave ! 

From the short concessions we went to the very shortest con- 
cessions la fosse commune the common ditch the paupers' 
holes, in which they pile a full dozen of coffins from bottom to top. 



258 REMINISCENCES OF 

There is a clerical gentleman kept here en permanence from an 
early hour in the morning to six o'clock at night in summer. I 
do not remember at what hour he shuts up shop in winter. Dead 
paupers arriving after, or even a few minutes to six o'clock, have 
to wait till next morning, which matters little to them, indeed, 
but may make a vast deal of difference to the unhappy relatives 
and friends who wish to rendre les derniers honneurs to the de- 
parted, as they may have to sacrifice half a day's labour and 
wages next morning. 

On this occasion it was near six o'clock when we came upon 
the reverend gentleman, who was seated under an immense 
cotton umbrella, evidently deeply interested not the umbrella, 
but the reverend in the pages of what looked to my experi- 
enced eyes suspiciously like light literature. Just at this 
juncture two " pauper funerals " were wending their way up to the 
plateau. The gardien came up to the reverend gentleman, humbly 
asking him to officiate, as the followers of one of the convois 
were very poor people, who could but ill afford to come up again 
in the morning. 

" Mais vous savez que c'est trop tard ; 1'heure de la cloture va 
sonner," said the reverend gentleman, curtly, " cependant comme 

ce sont de pauvres gens " And he rose, and moved on to the 

open grave. " Male ou femelle?" he asked briefly of the boy who 
attended him in the capacity of a juvenile sacristan. 

" Femelle et male," responded that worthy functionary, with 
equal brevity. These were two pauper corpses, the first a girl of 
eighteen, the other a man of seventy-eight. "Adultes," the boy 
added, for his reverend chief's information. 

The burial proceeded in the usual way, the reverend gentle- 
man going nimbly through his Latin formula, and dashing the 
holy- water-sprinkle three times on to the grave in the orthodox 
fashion, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost ; 
then running on rapidly to the end, he finished off with a fierce 
and loud aside to the serving boy, " 'ere gredin, il n'y a pas d'eau 
dans votre goupillon." The careless boy had simply forgotten to 
dip the sprinkling brush in holy water. Walter Thornbury, who 
was somewhat given to speculation, was much exercised in his 
mind, pondering upon the deep question whether the absence of 
the canonical water from the sprinkling brush would or would 
not injuriously affect the chances of eternal salvation of the two 
paupers just then interred in hugger-mugger. Death is the most 
solemn incident in the life of man terrible, yet, oh, how beau- 
tiful ! The French have somehow succeeded in stripping it of 
all its beauty, leaving^it nought but its terrors. Well, well! 
Passons ! matwre de breviaire, as Frere Jean hath it. We went 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 259 

away in a sad and melancholy mood, born of the impression we 
had just received of the admirable way in which they order some 
things in France. Had a Laurence Sterne been with us, I verily 
believe it might have slightly disconcerted even his Gallic 
predilections. 

I had in the course of the afternoon had occasion to point out 
another little thing to my companions. I had led them up the 
avenue where great men of letters lie buried. I had pointed out 
to them, among others, the bust of one of the very greatest men 
of letters of all nations ; and also, at the very top of the ceme- 
tery, a towering monument, which both Jacobsen and Thornbury 
declared must be the tribute of a grateful nation to some won- 
drous public benefactor, indignantly remarking at the same time 
upon the state of negleco into which it had been permitted to fall. 
I soon damped their enthusiasm, and calmed their indignation, 
by informing them that this grand monument had been erected 

simply over the remains of a M. , of whom very few people 

had ever heard, but who had left directions in his will that out of 
his estate one hundred thousand francs should be spent upon a 
monument, to mark the spot where his dust was laid. Poor man ! 
He had neglected to assign a sufficiency of his estate to the neces- 
sary repairs of said monument, more especially to the periodical 
re-gilding of the top. The bust of the man of letters represented 
the great Tourangeot, the wondrous author of the " Comedy of 
Human Life ; " the Shakespeare of France Honore de Balzac. 
The topmost monument might be taken to belong rather to the 
farce than to the drama of life. 

Poor gentle Walter Thornbury ! Within a few brief years after, 
he was laid in his last resting-place ; and, most sad to add, his 
mind died ere his body. 

And my ever dear friend and brother, Jacobsen the Dane, the 
witty Dane of Westminster, as we used to call him in the club, is 
also long since gone to his Walhalla, of which he so dearly loved 
to talk in those wondrously charming heart effusions, indulged in 
by him but rarely, however, and only in the intimate circle of his 
nearest and dearest friends. 

I think it was some twenty-two or twenty-three years ago, 
when I was doing notarial and other translations, in conjunction 
with a very dear friend, Alfred Elwes, one of the most accom- 
plished linguists of the present time, that the directors of the 
Northern and Mercantile Insurance Company put into our hands 
their new prospectus, to be rendered into French, Italian, German, 
Spanish, Swedish, Danish, etc. My old friend Peter Homer 
Burgomaster of Elberfeld in the revolutionary period of 1848-49, 

s 2 



260 REMINISCENCES OF 

then a merchant in the City of London, to whom I applied for 
the address of a thoroughly competent Danish-English scholar, 
referred me to Mr. Jacobsen, a young Dane, in the office of Messrs. 
Melladew and Co., Mark Lane. I found this young man perfectly 
qualified for the task required. In fact, he handled Danish, 
English, and German with complete mastery ; had a good know- 
ledge of Swedish and Norse, and spoke French pretty fluently. 

In a short time we became fast friends. I introduced him to 
the club, and he was elected a member. He endeared himself to- 
all of ns. He was one of the sweetest-tempered men that I ever 
knew. During an experience extending over close upon ten 
years, I never once saw him irritated or heard an angry or unkind 
word fall from his lips. Only of one other dear friend of mine- 
can I conscientiously say the same John Cargill Brough. 

When I met Jacobsen first, he was in every way a splendid 
specimen of the genus homo, and it would have been difficult to- 
detect in his outer man the least indication of the fearful germ 
concealed within of that dread disease which strikes down so 
many bright men and women in the flower of their age con- 
sumption. Yet the germ was there, to work its deadly effect 
only too soon. 

In 1867 we were in Paris together. I was employed at the 
Great Exhibition, under my friend Peter Lund Simmonds, who 
had placed Yictoria, the Cape of Good Hope, the Mauritius, and 
a few more of the smaller British colonies and possessions under 
my care. I also had at the time the arrangements for the advent 
of the great Japanese Exhibition to Paris placed in my hands.. 
So I could afford to show a brotherly feeling to a dear fellow- 
Bohemian like John Jiirgen Severin Jacobsen, who was emphati- 
cally out of luck then, and, most unhappily, entering an advanced' 
critical stage of his sad malady. 

We occupied " apartments " two small bed-rooms on the sixth 
floor in the Passage de PIndustrie, Boulevard de Strasbourg.. 
The poor invalid found it an arduous task to mount the one 
hundred and seventeen steps leading to our lofty roost ; yet he 
would sometimes brave the steep ascent five and even sixv 
times a day without murmuring, and would humorously dub- 
it the " genial climb." And what happy hours we passed there,, 
to be sure ! What splendid spreads of cliarcuterie and fried 
fish and fowl, and lettuce and cucumber salad, with lashings 
or lushings I hardly know which should be held the more 
applicable of the two termini technici of the best vintages 
procurable at sixpence the quart, and, occasionally, ample 
supplies of genuine pale ale Salt and Co/s which we got 
at an agent's in the Rue Scribe, who was so powerfully im- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 261 

pressed by the magnitude of the order we gave, and the grand 
manner in which it was given, that he absolutely forwarded with 
the beer a naming signboard, practically appointing us thereby 
sub-agents for the sale of the article in our locality ! We put 
this signboard at the hotel door, to the intensest amazement of 
the passers-by. How we used to carouse in this Olympus of 
ours ! with a congenial band of Bohemians, native and naturalised, 
and hospitant Christian Worms, a deep-drinking Dane, of florid 
mien and summery heart; George Shears, an old schoolfellow 
of Draper's, and an excellent friend of mine of many years' 
standing ; young Jopp ; Charley Quin, a most genuine sample of 
the thorough Hibernian, clever, warm-hearted, and wrong-headed, 
with "Bibamus, dum vivimus, et gaudeamus, pereat mundns !" 
for his motto ; E. P. Kingston, the " rampage " companion of 
Artemus Ward, a very old friend of mine, to whom, in conjunction 
with the late Christopher Pond, I was mainly indebted for my 
connection with the Japanese Exhibition ; Walter Thornbury, 
and others. We also had distinguished visitors occasionally 
Harry Leigh, for instance, then passing through Paris on his 
way to Spain, appointed " special " for a leading American paper; 
and Tom Robertson, with the blushing honours of recent brilliant 
dramatic successes fresh blooming upon him. 

I remember there were some hard-working milliners right 
opposite us, on the other side of the passage, whom we were 
generously desirous to make partakers in our banquets. Jacobsen 
used to throw a small stone out of our window right across into 
the opposite window, with a strong string attached to it. The 
girls caught the stone, passed the string over a thick peg in their 
window, and threw the stone back again. By repeating the 
same feat twice or three times more we constructed a kind of 
suspension bridge, with guiding lines, for passing victuals and 
bottles across, high over the heads of the passers beneath, at the 
imminent risk, it must be confessed, of having some of the 
heavier articles descend on said heads. However, I have always 
-found that there is a Providence watching over the foolhardy : no 
one came to grief through our agency. 

In our halcyon days we would occasionally indulge in small 
dinner-parties at some famed restaurant, or in suppers, at Peters', 
in the Passage des Princes. There was a cafe'-restaurant in the 
Place de la Tour St. Jacques which we somehow managed to 
transform into a British hostelry, increasing the market value of 
the place fourfold, as was proved practically when the then 
proprietor ceded it to a new man, in the fall of the year. 

After the fat kine came the lean kine, and wretched cattle 
tlicy proved to be. They speedily ate every green spot out of us, 



262 REMINISCENCES OF 

and what had for a brief period been Bohemia the blest soon got 
covered over again with shingle and stone. Fortunately for us, 
both Jacobsen and myself were prepared to bear either fortune 
with equal fortitude. So we cheerfully dropped ( our junketings, 
and partook of one solitary sober meal a day, at the rate of one 
shilling and eightpence for the two, which we had to reduce still 
further in the course of time, to the one clear half. We lived on 
bread then, a modicum of small Orleans land wine, and a certain 
compound known as fromage d'ltalie, very much like goose-liver 
pasty, barring the goose and the pasty, and also, in a great 
measure, the liver. 

Jacobsen took this somewhat unwonted fare without wry face 
or grumbling. All this time we might have had succulent dinners 
at the Tour St. Jacques on tick, but we preferred keeping clear of 
pecuniary involvements. 

One day, however, when the last bottle of our period of 
splendour had been returned to the wine and beer dealers in 
exchange for the twopence left on it, and I found that the joint- 
stock capital of the firm was about sixpence, I sadly communi- 
cated the sad intelligence to Jacobsen, entreating the dear fellow 
not to mind it, and not to be disheartened by it. I might have 
spared my breath. He disheartened, indeed! Not a bit of it. 
On the contrary, tossing up his Scotch cap high in the air, he 
shouted " Hurrah ! " as loud as his sorely-affected throat would 
let him ; " Hurrah ! we shall have a good dinner for once ! Let 
us go to St. Jacques." He then touchingly confided to me that 
fromage d'ltalie was certainly not the cheese for him: in fact,, 
that he abhorred the very sight and scent of it ; for which I 
realjy could not blame him, since it truly is an abominable con- 
coction. Yet with a little skill, a little knowledge, and a little 
honesty it might be made an appetizing and nutritious dish. 

I mentally resolved that come what might I would never 
again place fromage d'ltalie before friend Jacobsen. For the 
nonce we decided to go to the cafe in the Place de la Tour St. 
Jacques, where we were compelled by the very force of circum- 
stances to have a dinner at three shillings a-head a good dinner,. 
in fact, as Jacobsen had knowingly foreseen ; for our Bohemian 
experience had taught us both the folly of contracting very small 
debts. It was one of Holt's wise saws, that a few pounds in- 
debtedness might prove a millstone round the poor debtor's neck, 
whilst a thousand pounds' debts would weigh as a mere pebble in 
the large debtor's pocket. It turned out all right again in the 
course of a few days. Jacobsen went back to London to accept 
an excellent position in a leading Swedish City House; and I 
followed him soon after, to edit a great work on Finance, in 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 263 

which I dealt with millions upon millions as if gold were but the 
merest dross, and bank-notes worth less than used-up blotting- 
paper, and enlightened the great City world upon the most 
intricate questions of foreign exchanges, of which I had up to a 
few months previously been profoundly ignorant. 

It was rather stiff work to do, which heavily taxed my in- 
tellectual powers, but it put a hundred pounds into my purse at a 
time when matters were at a very low ebb with me; and it 
introduced me to Ernest and Richard Seyd, two high financial 
and statistical authorities, who both became members of the 
Savage Club through my instrumentality. 

Poor Ernest, who truly was a financial genius, is gone to a 
world where there are no standards of valuation to vex the mind. 
But my friend Kichard Seyd is still to the fore the highest 
authority on the solvency or otherwise and the financial trust- 
worthiness of the leading commercial companies and firms all 
over the world. 

This slice of good luck I owed to the warm recommendation 
of my dear old friend William Effingham Wilson, to whom I was 
first introduced some thirty years ago by Alfred Elwes. 

The name Wilson stands, indeed, brightly inscribed on some 
of the pleasantest pages of the book of my life. William Wilson 
is a sterling good fellow, who has many a time and often given or 
procured me literary employment when I most wanted it. 

Then there is Edward Wilson, one of the rising men of the 
time and the Times, a fluenti elegant, and logical political writer 
of the highest order, possessed of the somewhat rare qualification 
of a most thorough and exhaustive knowledge of the subjects on 
which he writes. From the day that Edward Wilson was first 
introduced to me by Charles Kussell, then of the Morning Star, ^ 
he has been one of the truest and most helpful friends I ever had 
in life. I have of late years had times of tribulation, which I 
might not have tided over but for the supporting grasp of his f 
friendly hand. God bless him for it ! / 



It may seem strange that I should have ventured upon a matter 
of which I confess to have been so profoundly ignorant. You 
see I have tried my hand at a great many things. Why, I actually 
once held a contract for constructing a public road in Normandy, 
and was really making a good thing of it, too, when the authorities 
from whom I held the contract suddenly discovered that a foreigner 
had no right to hold it without express authorisation by the 
Home Minister and the Minister of Public Works. The fact was, 



264 EEMINISCENCES OF 

they had remarked the extreme simplicity of my modus operandi, 
which consisted in the main in the intelligent division and proper 
apportionment of labour, and the payment of wages upon a 
fair lire-and-let-live principle, which made every labourer as 
interested in the success of the work as I myself could 
possibly be. 

What could I know of road-making? Well, I had seen a 
great deal of work done in that line many years before in Algiers, 
when I was assistant-surgeon in the Foreign Legion. There the 
military authorities conducted the work upon a very different 
principle, which was certainly much more expensive in the end, 
and much less effective, than mine. 

There was a detachment told off of some three hundred men 
of the third battalion of the legion, which had to march out 
every morning at half-past three o'clock, under command of a 
lieutenant, and attended by my humble self as medical officer in 
charge. It was about an hour and a half's march from Mustapha 
Pasha, our then quarters, to the road in course of construction. 
We used to reach the place accordingly about five o'clock. There 
was a young officer of engineers, with a small detachment of 
his own corps, who directed the works. 

The men did not like the business at all. I have in another 
part of these reminiscences given a fair description of the class 
of men we had in the legion. It was not likely that these men, 
many of them gentlemen by birth and education, would take 
kindly to that sort of work without the stimulus, at least, of some 
fair remuneration for their labour. 

Now the short-sighted authorities paid no money-wage what- 
ever ; they simply gave each man about three-quarters of a pound 
of bread and seventy-five centilitres of light Spanish wine a day, 
in addition to the daily ration of a pound and a half of bread and 
a half-litre of wine, which certainly was not calculated to inspire 
the lucky recipients with an inordinate desire to advance the 
works of the road. On the contrary, every possible dodge was 
resorted to to give the Government, if possible, even less than 
the value of the bread and wine. 

Of the two working hours fixed by the regulations, a good 
half-hour was spent upon pretended wrangling over the distri- 
bution of the implements. When the wheelbarrows, the pickaxes, 
and the shovels had at last been satisfactorily bestowed among 
the men, the holder of the pick would make an immense show 
of impending energetic action. After feeling his deltoid muscle, 
he would raise the pick high in the air, then let it come down, 
rather gently though, and the rest of the squad would gather 
round him in silent wonder, as it were, at the very modest bit of 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 265 

earth his prowess had dislodged. Then two of the squad would 
wrangle about which was to secure the matter on his shovel, 
whilst the wheelbarrow- man would stand by surveying the whole 
in calm contemplation. As sergeants and officers were equally 
disgusted with administrative road-building the road in course 
of construction leading seemingly from nowhere to nowhere, in 
the true French- Algerine fashion of the time and as the French 
Government of the day did not exactly command the love and 
affection of the Foreign Legion, which it seemed to look upon 
simply as cheap material for wasting, no one felt himself specially 
called upon to interfere with the " lazy-alley," as Jacobsen used 
to call it, of the workers, if by any stretch of license of language 
the term could possibly be applied to our noble detachnfcnt. At 
seven we marched back again to Mustapha Pasha. I verily 
believe there never was a more costly bit of road constructed 
anywhere in the world. I had to keep to this tedious duty about 
six weeks. My companion in misery was, for the most part of 
the time, Lieutenant von Hebisch, a Suabian, a very nice and 
decent sort of fellow, only, perhaps a little over-much addicted to 
"abduction" of dogs, and an adept at disguising them in paint, 
so that even their old masters could not know them again. Had 
his lines in life fallen among the street Arabs of London, he 
would surely have done a roaring trade in painting birds, he 
having somehow discovered a way of making his colours fast. 

Hebisch very nearly came to grief once about a dog which 
happened to belong unbeknown to him, as Mrs. Gamp would 
say to General Voirol, then interimistic Governor-General of 
Algeria, a long, lean, haggard, sallow old trooper, whom I saw a 
few years after at Strasburg, on the occasion of Louis Napoleon's 
apparently insane attempt to seize upon that fortress, which was 
within an ace of succeeding. Had it succeeded, it would be diffi- 
cult to say what might be the complexion of the world now, for it 
was made at a time when the marvellous German war machine 
was not even yet dreamt of ; when it was still doubtful whether 
"Prince William of Prussia" would ever ascend the throne; 
when "Captain" Roonwas still delivering lectures on geography 
and tactics at the Prussian Central War School ; when Moltke 
was aiding Sultan Mahmud in the re-organization of the Turkish 
army ; and when Bismarck was still on the lowest rungs of the 
Prussian office-ladder. 

However, revenons a nos cliiens peints. Hebisch had the dog 
in question abducted by a brave legionary, who did not think 
proper to enlighten the lieutenant upon the rather important 
point of ownership. Hebisch painted the animal magnificently 
yellow, with red and brown spots, white being its native colour. 



266 REMINISCENCES OF 

He had a knack of gaining the affection of animals. The 
took to him, and followed him about everywhere. At the grand 
July review, the dog unluckily recognized his old master, the 
general, and showed its delight, dog-fashion, by jumping at the- 
generaPs horse, barking and whining. The sequel was that 
Hebisch, with noble generosity, presented the dog to the general 
as a free gift, averring at the same time that he had bought 
the animal of an Arab, who must have stolen and painted it. I 
think the general paid him back the alleged purchase-money. 

Soon after his return to London, about the beginning of 1868, 
Jacobsen, who was then luckily in a good financial position, 
rapidly grew worse in health. Eemembering what arsenic 
had done for me when almost at the last gasp I had 
a notion that this heroic remedy might at least restore the tone 
of his stomach, and thus enable his much-enfeebled and emaciated 
frame to bear up a little longer against the increasing distressing 
drain upon it by expectoration. As I was reluctant to act upon 
my own judgment in so momentous a matter, I took my poor 
friend to Dr. John Gardner, a most skilful physician, the founder 
of the College of Chemistry, whom I had known for close upon 
thirty years, and who consented to prescribe arseniate of soda in 
minute doses. 

It was almost miraculous how the patient seemed to improve 
under the arsenic treatment. His appetite was good, and he was 
actually gaining flesh and strength ! After six weeks' medication,, 
however, Gardner, who was a firm believer in the cumulative 
theory, thought it would be rash in the extreme to go on with 
the arsenic without a few weeks' intermittence. 

Well, poor Jacobsen soon lost again what had been gained. 
Some of the big guns in pulmonary complaints were now con- 
sulted ; but the patient simply got from bad to worse. At last 
I took him to another esteemed friend of mine, Dr. Morell Mac- 
kenzie, who, after a brief examination with the laryngoscope, 
which revealed most extensive ulceration of the larynx, with 
almost total destruction of the vocal chords, advised as a last, 
though well-nigh hopeless resource, that Jacobsen should enter 
the Hospital for Diseases of the Throat in Golden Square, as an 
in-patient. This was done ; and if it had been within the range 
of human will, skill, and power, Dr. Mackenzie and his assistant, 
Dr. Lennox Brown, a member of the club, who gave his most 
loving care to the case, would have preserved this precious life. 
But it was not to be: within a short fortnight the end came. 
On the very evening before the fatal termination, the poor fellow- 
had been running a race in the enclosure of the square with 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 267" 

another patient, and had won it, as he exultingly told us Quin,. 
Andorssen, a Norwegian, one of his oldest, truest, and staunchest 
friends, and myself adding in his own humorous way, " Egad* 
boys, you see I have so deuced little flesh upon my poor bones, 
that I fly over the ground as light as a feather. But," he added,, 
with a melancholy smile, " I am bound to lose the other race 
which I am running with old bony, who is lighter still than I am,, 
and can run so much the faster." 

Next morning I was fetched to the hospital by special mes- 
senger. I went at once, and gave my consent to the post-mortem 
which Brown wished to make. I strove to be present at the sad 
operation ; but somehow, I, who surely had been rather over- 
familiar with that sort of work, fainted at the first plunge of the- 
knife into what had been, up to a few brief hours before, my dear 
friend and brother, and I had to be taken upstairs. 

He left me his watch good, true, and sterling as himself. 
It had been given him in his childhood, and he had had it for 
some twenty years. I have had it now for nearly fifteen years, 
and it still keeps as true time as ever. I have it cleaned every 
four years, and I am told each time that the works, though cer- 
tainly excellent, are wearing out fast ; yet I have a notion they 
will last out the watchmaker who is so hard upon them ay, they 
may even survive me yet. I have christened the watch John 
Jiirgen Severin Jacobsen his initials stand engraved on the- 
back and I talk to it in the solitude of my chamber. Old men 
have strange fancies : its tic-tac sounds to me like the voice 
of my departed friend. I remember having read, in Wilhelm 
HaufTs "Memoirs of Satan," of an old man who gave a grand 
banquet once a year to a number of worn old leaves from his 
album reminiscences of a circle of friends long departed. I do 
the same occasionally to the memory of those who were dear to 
me in life ; only my spread is ultra-Bohemian, and like unto the- 
Barmecide's feast. 

Jacobsen's life was insured for a thousand pounds in the 
Albert Life Insurance Company. In the dreary days of dearth, in 
1867, he had been compelled to ask a friend to pay the premium for 
him some fifty pounds altogether and he had handed the policy 
to the said friend as a security, with a kind of semi-assignment. 

After the poor fellow's death, a fierce contention arose between 
his father, who was heir-at-law, and was represented by the 
Chancellor of the Danish Consulate in London, and the holder of 
the life policy. 

It so happened that I had good reason to believe that the 
Albert Insurance Company was in a bad way, and that delay in 
claiming payment of the policy might prove dangerous. I urged 



268 REMINISCENCES OF 

this strongly upon the two contending parties, and succeeded, 
though witn immense difficulty, in arranging the matter between 
them. The day of payment being appointed at last, the chancellor 
went to the office to receive the cheque. Fortunately I was with 
him. "We were coolly informed that the- manager of a certain 
loan office had put a detainer on the cash for some twelve pounds, 
I think, due to the office. We asked the cashier to retain suffi- 
cient to satisfy this claim. "^Ve were told that this could not be 
done ; it was against the rules and routine of the office. 

Now, I had somehow an intuitive feeling that if the money 
could not be got that very day, it would never be got at all. So 
I took a cab to the loan office, and saw the manager, Who, upon 
my urgent representations, consented to give me a full discharge, 
with which I drove back triumphant. The cheque was given and 
cashed just two minutes before the close of banking hours. Next 
morning the shutters were up at the Albert. 

I have sai<J. that there was only one other dear, dear friend 
and brother of mine that could compare with Jacobsen in 
equanimity of temper and sweetness of disposition John Cargill 
Brough, a brother of the brothers Brough, a paragon of a true 
Bohemian, with all the virtues and none of the vices of the tribe 
about him, one of the sturdiest and sincerest and boldest searchers 
after truth to whom this age of ours has given birth. 

John Brough and his brother, my ever, ever dear Koberfe, who 
both loved me as a brother, and thought and felt in unison with 
me, sparkle along with a few more of my Bohemian brothers as 
bright relieving stars of light on the sombre canvas of my later 
life's panorama. All gone ! all gone ! Ay, it is indeed a heavy 
fine, a bitter penalty to pay for a few additional years of joyless 
life, to know and feel that you are left standing alone, a solitary 
trunk, lopped of branches, 'reft of leaves, in the midst of an un- 
sympathetic, a naturally and necessarily unsympathetic, young 
and fresh and green growth. 

Dr. John Gardner, the physician who kindly took upon himself 
the responsibility of treating Jacobsen with arsenic, was a very 
old and dear friend of mine. We did a deal of literary work 
together. He was one of the comparatively few true healers 
whom I have known in the course of a long life. He was a man 
of sterling character, and a steadfast true friend. 

He was the real founder of the London College of Chemistry, 
made famous by having Professor Hofmann for its first teacher, 
and supplying England with a number of theoretically and prac- 
tically accomplished chemists, such as, to confine myself here to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 269 

one of the brightest instances, Professor Abel of Woolwich. John 
Gardner, John Lloyd Bullock, and my humble self within the 
narrow limits of my restricted competence, of course conceived 
the idea of the College of Chemistry, and took the preliminary 
steps and measures to ensure the eventual carrying that idea into 
effect. 

John Gardner and Lloyd Bullock worked indefatigably to 
realise the grand conception of endowing London with an insti- 
tution that should not need to fear comparison with the great 
schools and laboratories of the Continent ; and they succeeded <bo 
the fullest extent. The late Thomas Wakley also then Coroner 
for Middlesex and proprietor of the Lancet, to whose pages. 
Gardner and I contributed largely did his very best to push the 
undertaking. 

A number of noblemen and gentlemen 'of wealth and position 
were enrolled almost exclusively through John Gardner's inde- 
fatigable personal exertions as members of the council of the 
young institution. The Prince Consort accepted the presidency 
of the council, Benjamin Bond Cabbell the treasurership. Sir 
James Clarke, Her Majesty's Physician in Ordinary, gave much 
of his time and interest to promote the starting of the college. 

The most important point was to secure a Professor of esta- 
blished European reputation. Justus Liebig, then still at Giessen, 
was applied to. He recommended Dr. Will in the first instance ; 
but Will, with all his undoubted knowledge and his true chemical 
genius, was a nervous man, who shrank from what he looked 
upon as the awful responsibility of setting a new great chemical 
institution afloat. Fresenius also declined the offer ; Dr. Hofmann 
accepted it. 

A long-leasehold house was purchased in Hanover Square for 
eight thousand pounds, if I remember aright, and the laboratory 
buildings were commenced in the rear, which extended right to 
Oxford Street. The lease was taken in the names of three holders 
the Marquis of Breadalbane, to wit, Viscount Newry and Morne, 
and John Gardner, the secretary, who was the soul and the main- 
spring of the undertaking. I will not pretend to say here that 
Gardner acted wisely in having his name inserted in the lease 
without the express sanction of the council. But really the noble- 
men and gentlemen of the council troubled themselves very little 
about such mere matters of detail ; and Sir James Clarke, then 
the staunch friend of John Gardner, and Benjamin Bond Cabbell, 
the treasurer, were quite aware of the fact, and never uttered a 
syllable of protest against it, nor did the marquis or the viscount. 
Indeed I can conscientiously aver that when matters went awry 
afterwards, I heard the latter promise Gardner that he would 



:270 REMINISCENCES OF 

stand by him and defend the course of proceeding he had followed 
in the lease question. 

Sir James Clarke swore by Gardner, to use an expressive 
vulgarism, and Gardner really liked Sir James. Unhappily he 
had not a very exalted idea of Sir James as a great physician, 
and, more unhappily still, he would occasionally, in presence of 
intimate friends, in his after-dinner heart's effusions, allow some 
slightly disparaging remarks to escape him anent Sir James's 
medical skill. 

Well, it would appear that, somehow or other, one of his 
friends, in an unguarded moment, repeated some such remarks 
in Sir James's hearing. The unfortunate result was that Sir 
James swore to be revenged upon the man who had presumed to 
n'eflect upon his professional acquirements, even though in the 
seclusion of his own family, and in the confidence of friendship. 

I was present when Sir James Clarke, in a state of red-hot 
anger, shook his fist in Dr. Gardner's face, shouting to him, " I 
will ruin you for this, sir ; I will ruin you." 

And it did not take the irate physician very long to adjoin to 
himself the treasurer, who had a favourite of his own in petto for 
the secretaryship. And the two gentlemen worked together with 
a will to impress upon the minds of the members of the council 
the secretary's heinous offence of getting his name inserted in 
the lease. The college was firmly established by this time all 
the real substantial work was done. So the man was to be quietly 
shelved who had done it all who had given all his energies to 
the accomplishment of the arduous task ; who had collected one 
by one all the bricks of the structure, and cemented them 
together ; who had, it may be averred without the least tinge of 
exaggeration, devoted all his time and all his talent and all his 
thoughts to it ; who had worked for it day and night without 
whom there would, in fact, have been no College of Chemistry, 
even in the wildest fancy dreams of the gentlemen who thought 
fit to sit in condemnation I will not call it judgment, as that is 
an act presupposing impartiality in the judges upon him. 

I am afraid poor Dr. Gardner committed a grievous mistake 
in striving to oppose the council. He was advised by a solicitor 
that, as one of the leaseholders, he had an indefeasible right to 
hold the premises against all comers. 

A meeting of the council was called. Gardner asked me as a 
particular favour to assist him in his resistance to the intended 
hostile action of the council. I slept at Hanover Square the 
night before the projected meeting, and in the morning wrote 
some forty or fifty notices to the council members, to inform them 
hat the secretary, acting upon legal advice, would dispute their 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 271 

right to hold the meeting at the house in which he claimed partial 
ownership. Only two members of the council faithfully and 
staunchly stood by him of whom Thomas "VVakley was one; 
most of the other members, even if not disposed to be actively 
hostile, declined giving the unfortunate secretary their countenance 
or support. 

Sir James came to the front door to ask admission of me. 
I told him in the most courteous manner that, acting as Gardner's 
friend, under legal advice, I could not admit him ; and I repulsed 
his foot when, after this intimation, he tried to force his way in. 

I had advised Gardner to go before a magistrate, to claim the 
protection of the law against all attempts at forcible entry. I 
thought the Court of Chancery was the proper tribunal to decide 
the question in dispute. The solicitor told me he knew the law, 
and there could nob possibly be an attempt made to enter by 
force. Gardner trusted to him and his assurance. 

The council, on the other hand, with the Marquis of Breadal- 
bane, who, according to Gardner's statement to me, had promised 
him his support, and Viscount Newry and Morne, whom I had 
positively heard promise the same, went to Marlborough Street, 
and obtained the magistrate's sanction and the aid of the police 
to effect an entry. The idea of a poor man pitting himself against 
the high and mighty in the land, with the Prince Consort at their 
head, was utterly preposterous. Prince Albert might have stood 
Gardner's protector had Gardner taken my advice to submit the 
entire affair to his Royal Highness's judgment. As it was, the 
Prince could not but see in the secretary's action a most unjusti- 
fiable opposition to the authority of the council. The upshot was 
that Gardner had to resign the secretaryship. 

Dr. John Gardner has gone to his last account. He died full 
of years, deeply mourned by a loving wife and affectionate 
children, and sincerely regretted by a large circle of friends. In 
him I lost one of my oldest friends in England, and one of the 
very few remaining links between the past and the present. 
However, in this one particular instance, I have the rare consola- 
tion that I may truly say, Uno avulso, non deficit alter. I enjoy 
the friendship of another John Gardner, to whom Bullock intro- 
duced me many years ago. This John Gardner is a sound chemist, 
a most careful analyst, a many-sided scholar, a good scientific 
writer, and a most lovable fellow, with a strong dash of Bohe- 
mianism in his composition. 

Chemistry has always been a favourite pursuit of mine 
almost as much as cookery. I have dabbled in it from boyhood, 
the laboratory and the kitchen being my pet places of resort and 



272 REMINISCENCES OF 

amusement. Had I but been well inspired to stick assiduously 
to both or either, there is no saying but I might have achieved 
success in life. I have enjoyed, and I enjoy to the present day, 
the friendship of many followers of that most noble calling 
chemistry. 1 may truly affirm that it was chiefly the eminent 
chemist I admired in my ever-revered master Raspail, in times 
long, long since gone by. John Brough was endeared to me in 
many ways ; still our common love of chemistry was one of the 
strongest ties between us. My admiration for men like Liebig,. 
Thenard, Dumas, Mitscherlich, Fresenius, Hofmann, Graham, 
Blythe, Gregory, and others of the same high stamp, whom I 
knew personally, was always unbounded. I positively take pride 
in the fact that I knew Abel when he was a mere lad. I was inti- 
mately connected with the late Dr. Henry Medlock, another 
chemist of repute, to whose English version of the " Book of 
Nature " I contributed the three articles on Botany, Zoology, and 
Mineralogy. 

With Professor Louvet, of Brussels, I carried on a friendly 
correspondence for more than ten years, yet we never met face to 
face. 

Bullock, my oldest surviving and dearest friend in England, 
and Scoffern, hardly less dear to me, are both eminent chemists ; 
and Quin, another friend, formerly of the Savage Club, and still 
and always a Bohemian, belongs to the same noble craft. 

William Maugham also, who first introduced Carrara water 
into the family of aerated drinks, as he justly believed that lime- 
was more natural and assimilable to the human frame and con- 
stitution than either potassa or soda, was an old chum of mine, 
with whom I often worked in experimental chemistry. His 
Carrara water was really an excellent drink. It was made from 
the purest Carrara marble. Every bottle contained eight grains 
of pure bicarbonate of lime ; it kept on bubbling and sparkling 
five times as long as soda or potassa. Poor fellow ! he had no 
business capacity whatever, which broke his neck in the affair, as 
the firm who backed him in the working of the patent left him 
unfortunately also the whole and sole management of the com- 
mercial part of it ; and his thoroughly unpractical notion was 
that the readiest way to dispose of large quantities of the article 
was to distribute it gratis among all his acquaintances and their 
connections. He thought these sprats would catch no end of 
herrings in the shape of big orders. Unfortunately the larger 
fish declined the inviting bait, and the smaller fry i.e., the dis- 
tributory samples ran out; and so did the patience of the 
capitalists, who, seeing no safe prospect of a return for their out- 
lay, shut up the Carrara Water Works, which of course shut up- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 273 

poor Maugham likewise.* He was an excellent practical chemist,, 
and managed to pick up a living for a time. He contributed also 
occasionally a paper to the Chemical Times, when it was my 
publication, but the pay was necessarily meagre. He had a 
sterling friend in the late Frederick Gye who, in fact, had intro- 
duced us to one another, and who got him at last a nomination to- 
the Charterhouse ; but poor Maugham did not live long after his 
admission to that institution. He left a family behind him 
totally unprovided for. It is ever thus in this very best world of 
ours. In the midst of all his grievous troubles, Maugham was 
much inclined to mirth. He was full of anecdote. He used to 
tell me, some fifty times over, a tale of his late grandfather, a 
rector in the fens of Lincolnshire, a most inveterate smoker, who 
yet managed to live up to ninety -two. "He called all of us,, 
some fifty-six descendants, present on the melancholy occasion of 
his extinction, round his bedside," Maugham used to tell me,. 
44 and addressing himself more especially to the grown-up male 
members of the family, said in a voice of deep regretful sorrow : 
' Ah, my boys, take a warning by me ; eschew tobacco, avoid 
smoking. Had I acted upon this advice, which I earnestly urge 
upon you now, I should not be cut off thus in the flower of my 
age!'" 

Ay, why did I take Arthur Gorgey's part, even after Villages ? 
Why, I am afraid, simply because, when I knew him first, he was 
only an ardent student of chemistry, innocent yet of Riidiger 
capitulations, with the horrible sequel at Arad ! 

When I am in London I make it a point never to miss the 
weekly symposium held every Thursday night in a certain 
laboratory near Regent Street. The long table is on such festive 
occasions cleared of filtering and other apparatus, evaporating 
dishes and pans, and microscopes and other scientific "encum- 
brances." The "boss," parodying Alexander, might well say: 
" Were I not a respectable, well-to-do operative chemist and sub- 
stantial householder, I would dearly like to be a Bohemian." And 
indeed, barring impecuniosity, positive or comparative, he has all 
the makings of the article about him. He is as much above the 
law of damask and silver-plate as great kings are said to be above 
the laws of grammar. Five or six sheets of brown packing-paper, 
carefully smoothed out, serve to deck the table. Large and 
small plates, cups and saucers, and measuring glasses, in a 
pleasing variety of shapes and denominations, with a profuse 

* I find that Carrara water is still flourishing among the a6rateds. 
However, I do not know whether the article ia produced by Maugham'a 
process. 

T 



274 REMINISCENCES OF 

sprinkling of tumblers among them, knives and forks to 
match or not, as the case may be, are artistically distributed 
all over the festive board in regular confusion. A big kettle 
is kept singing over a convenient gas flame. A fine tea-pot, 
with a specially delicious Chinese shrub-brew in it, occupies a 
position of honour, wrapped in a capacious cosy. A well-filled 
sugar-basin and a large jar of sugar-syrup are handy. Plates 
hugely heaped with ham, tongue, bacon, and other "delicacies 
of the season," smile invitingly in the faces of the guests, with 
best Devonshire butter and plenty of Indian pickles. Very old 
deliciously mild and oily whisky, that beats Farintosh hollow, 
stands there in quart bottles, lovingly cheek by jowl with a bottle 
of Bordeaux for the old Bohemian, who prefers to take his tea 
after, and half-a-dozen or so of Apollinaris, the queen of aerated 
waters. Seats are placed around in picturesque variety, from the 
three-legged stool to the easy-chair. At about six the guests 
begin to tumble in. There is Alexander Young Stewart, late of 
Apothecaries' Hall, an excellent theoretical and practical member 
of the craft, and a hearty good fellow to boot, though perhaps 
just a leetle wrong-headed occasionally, and a red-hot To I beg 
his pardon Liberal Conservative in his politics, the same as his 
friend plain practical Taylor. Then there is dear little John 
Gardner, who politically forms the opposite pole to the doughty 
champions of the past. Then we have Miles Smith, a self-made 
man who has risen to the managership of one of the largest 
chemical manufactories in England, Linford, Wenk, and others. 
De Yry will sometimes come over from the Hague ; and a number 
of hospitants, always most hospitably received and entertained 
by the "boss," will occasionally drop in. And last, though 
certainly not least, there is my dear friend Parker Margetson, to 
whose solicitous kindness and high professional skill I owe, under 
Providence, my recent recovery from one of the most malign 
maladies that can afflict poor humanity. Margetson is also a 
good chemist, and turns his chemical knowledge to the very best 
account in his diagnosis and treatment of diseases. His profes- 
sional views are as largely liberal as his political opinions. So 
here he sits on the "left side of the house." Dr. Margetson is a 
passionate admirer of music and song, and no mean poet. It may 
seem a rather incongruous accomplishment in a busy physician, 
with an extensive, rather wide-spread practice to attend to, and 
having necessarily to devote much time to keeping himself 
properly posted up in the progress which his own profession is 
constantly making, as well as in that made in the numerous 
branches of science therewith connected or bearing thereon ; but 
Dr. Margetson has translated most of Schiller's dramas and 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 275 

tragedies into corresponding excellent English verse. His trans- 
lations of the " Maid of Orleans," " William Tell," and " Maria 
Stuart" are especially felicitous in my opinion and I think I 
may consider myself a pretty good judge in such matters. Except 
Coleridge, whose translation of " Wallenstein " is simply glorious, 
I have only once in the course of a long life met another gentle- 
man capable of producing correct and happy English versions of 
Schiller's poetry John Riggs Miller, to wit, a pupil of mine 
well-nigh forty years ago. 

Need I say that here also death hath sadly thinned our ranks P 
Ay, many who in former years used to take their seat at the 
hospitable table in the laboratory are no longer with us. By 
singular good fortune, most rare, indeed, in my experiences of 
the twins life and death we have had no loss to deplore for 
over two years now. The last who was taken from our midst was 
William Stewart, Alexander Young's brother, who died a martyr 
to science from inhaling bromine fumes while acting as assistant 
to his brother at Apothecaries' Hall. He was a man of fine 
athletic frame and vigorous constitution, and he had actually * 
weathered and got over a first pulmonary seizure brought on by 
inhaling the fumes of bromine ; but only to fall a victim to a 
second seizure. He was an excellent fellow, and dearly beloved 
by all of us. 

On the occasion of the untoward termination of Gardner's 
connection with the College of Chemistry, he was also unmerci- 
fully attacked in -the Medical Times, then owned by Mr. T. P. 
Healey, who did even poor me the honour of a few disparaging 
remarks. At a later period, when I had left the Lancet^ for the 
Medical Times, and taken the editorship of the Pharmaceutical*^ 
Times, another of Healey's publications, I found out that Sir . 
James Clarke had instigated the attacks upon us in the Med. Tim*- 

I became intimately connected with Mr. T. P. Healey, who was 
one of the cleverest Hibernians I ever met, and a handsome and 
most charming fellow withal, a little over-Irish, perhaps, in his 
likings and dislikings. He could not and would not let Thomas 
Wakley alone the coroner for Middlesex, and proprietor of the 
rival Lancet but must forsooth go and dig up a couple of ex- 
ploded old slanders against the man, and put them boldly and 
prominently forward again in the pages of his own journal. One 
of these slanders was simply pitiable ; it was that Mr. Wakley 
had been Arthur Thistlewood's masked executioner, in 1820, in 
the Cato Street conspiracy case ; the other slander was simply 
Atrocious it imputed arson to the slandered man. 

Wakley brought an action for libel against Healey, who was 

T 2 



276 REMINISCENCES OF 

cast in damages to the tune of 375 and costs. Just about this 
same time Eealey took it perversely into his head to stand as a. 
candidate for the Staffordshire Potteries. He, with genuine 
Irish cheek, thought he could beat Alderman Copeland there,, 
who literally had the constituency in his pocket. Well, Healey 
spent above a clear thousand upon this more than absurd specu- 
lation. He had other debts, plenty and to spare, indeed, and his 
literary property was heavily mortgaged. And to crown all, 
there was a large Inland Eevenue claim upon him for advertise- 
ment duty, one of the vilest abominations of the past. 

So, what wonder that he came to grief, and his belongings 
to the hammer ? I was most sincerely sorry for him. I liked the 
man amazingly with all his small faults and foibles. Besides 
that, had he been able to weather the storm and stand his ground, 
it would have been something handsome in my pocket for work 
done. 

Poor fellow ! Shortly before his smash he was to be married 
to a lady with some twenty thousand pounds at her back, a most 
professing Protestant. Healey, who was a Eomanist, had kept 
this little fact a secret from his intended bride, who was corre- 
spondingly savage when it was revealed to her, basely and meanly, 
by a former friend of the bridegroom, who bore him a grudge. 
Somehow the quarrel between the lovers was made up af terwards,. 
and the marriage took place most likely, however, under very 
different conditions from what had been originally intended. 
Well, the lady proved to be the reverse of what the gentleman's 
fancy had pictured her, and in the end the unhappy man actually 
took refuge in his debts and in the Queen's Bench, where he 
preferred the county-side to proffered freedom and plenty, and 
had the importunate lady, who was but too eager to make it up 
with him, warned off the premises at last. 

When I was engaged on the Medical Times and the Pharma- 
ceutical Times, I made the acquaintance of the famous Dr. Knox, 
the eminent anatomist and anthropologist, Sir William ifergus son's 
great master, who got into such sad trouble about the Burke and 
Hare murders in Edinburgh, and had his anatomical hall pulled 
about his ears, and was forced to quit the Scotch capital. 

He was a nice gentlemanly man, wondrously full of know- 
ledge, and a very good scientific writer and lecturer, only a little 
over-finical, perhaps. He was writing at the time a most inte- 
resting series of articles in the Medical Times upon the races of 
man. His great lecture on the dark races the dark races of 
man was destined to achieve much wider fame through clever 
dear George Grossmith's well-known marvellously close side- 



AN OLD tiOKEMlAN. 277 

splitting imitation of it than the original, as given by the doctor 
himself, could ever have secured. George's imitation of the 
doctor's delivery, with the constantly recurring eye-glass re- 
ference to the slip of paper on which the subject of the lecture 
"the dark races the dark races of man" was supposed to be 
noted down, was'truly inimitable. 

It was a grievous pity, and, I feel inclined to believe, a 
sad misfortune for the study of both practical and speculative 
anatomy, that the promising career of this richly endowed man 
should have been permanently overshadowed by the untimely 
end of daft Jamie. 

" And," said he one day to us Healey, MacDougall, and me 
in the abandon of a friendly chat upon a variety of subjects, 
when this shady part of his career cropped up incidentally, 
"what was calculated to make this cursed business the more 
galling to me was the dreadful injustice of the whole thing. 
You see, I had nothing whatever to do with the acquisition of 
these dubious anatomical subjects. No matter, I had to bear 
the brunt of it, and to pay the heavy penalty of a broken career. 
It was an unhappy mistake altogether. He who really transacted 
the business with these hellhounds had just as little suspicion of 
the doings of the horrible villains with whom he was dealing as 
I could possibly have had. It would make precious little dif- 
ference to me now if the real facts of the case were known. But 
I have somehow a presentiment that the day will come when the 
matter will appear in its true light. I shall be dead and gone 
then." He was in a somewhat melancholy mood at the time. 
"But," he added, brightening up a bit, and turning to me, "our 
ancient here is safe to live to see it, as his two thousand years 
will not be up for a long while yet." For it is a strange thing 
how people have always been apt to chaff me on the subject of 
my supposed antiquity. 



At the Medical and Pharmaceutical Times office I made the 
acquaintance of another remarkable man Thomas Walker, who, 
I believe originally a stocking-loom weaver from Northampton, 
rose to be editor of the Daily News. Walker was simply an 
extraordinary man. When I first knew him he was publishing 
clerk at the office. He asked me to give him lessons in Latin, 
French and German, and in English composition. I was afraid 
he was attempting .too many subjects of study at once. Not a 
bit of it. The man was a very cormorant at learning. His pluck 



278 RtittWISGENCES OF 

and perseverance in podding his way through difficulties were 
beyond compare. I will not even say I taught him. He was one 
of those rare men who have the faculty of acquiring knowledge. 
He learnt sufficient in six months to lay a sound foundation for 
self-study after. 

Whilst making truly prodigious progress in the four or five 
difficult branches which he was studying with me pari passu 
and let it be borne in mind that he had only his evenings and 
nights to bestow upon this most arduous task which he had 
undertaken he taught himself shorthand, until he became one 
of the best verbatim reporters I have ever known ; and I have 
known many of the most eminent of the craft. At a later period 
he had occasion to go in for art-criticism. Now he was colour- 
blind. Well, what of that ? Thomas Walker was not the man 
to let such a mere trifle stand in his way. He simply educated 
his sight to distinguish in the end, with unerring certainty, 
among the subtlest tints and shades of colour. He was, indeed, 
a strong illustration of the truth of the old axiom, volenti nil 
difficile. 



At the same office I met another remarkable man Eichard 
Katcliff (or BadclyfFe) Pond, then an advertisement canvasser, 
Employed on the two journals. He was a young man, of good 
presence and winning manners. I soon became intimately ac- 
quainted with him ; and I used to dine some forty or fifty times 
a year at his place. I liked him amazingly, and he took to me 
with equal warmth. He was emphatically a good fellow, and 
unboundedly bountiful; indeed, but too often far beyond his 
means, although his advertising agency yielded him for many 

, years a very handsome revenue. He had a rather expensive 
foible for literary and theatrical speculations, which invariably 
came to grief. He went in repeatedly for the St. James's, also 

. for Drury Lane, generally in conjunction with Joe Stammers, and 

" for a variety of entertainments, musical and other. He was always 
dropping his money in such enterprises. I never knew him to 

I make a penny out of any of them. He was largely connected 

\with Peter Morrison of the well, famous Bank of Deposit, in 
which so many poor people lost their all. As an advertisement 
canvasser Pond was facile princeps. I never met his match. 
When he had made up his mind to have an order for twenty-six 
or fifty-two insertions of an advertisement in one or several of 
the London or provincial weeklies with which he was connected, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 279 

he would take no denial. Nothing could daunt, discourage, or 
repel him. He was invariably gentlemanly in his manners, and 
he would patiently and urbanely listen to every reason advanced 
in support of a point-blank refusal of his suit ; but the refusal 
might be repeated over and over again, perhaps even with angry 
indignation at his cool persistence : he would return to the charge 
undismayed. 

I had among my more intimate acquaintances a chemist of 
the name of Richards, whose house and shop stood on part of the 
present emplacement of the Londqn, Chatham, and Dover Ludgate 
Hill Station. I had been with him one day assisting him in 
compounding a brand-new modification of the Elixir Viennense, 
with the senna and Epsom salts omitted a kind of Prince of 
Denmark performance, with the part of Hamlet left out and 
was just taking leave, when Pond came in to apply for a renewed 
order of certain advertisements in his country papers. Well, 
Richards was not in the vein. He thought he had found out that 
advertising did not pay at least, not in his case. But Richard 
Ratcliff knew better, of course, and warmly argued the point with 
the recalcitrant Richards to not much purpose, however, as the 
chemist declared in the most peremptory manner that " nothing 
would induce him to throw away any more money upon useless 
advertising." 

As the agent manfully stood his ground, and would not be 
denied, Richards, the gentlest and mildest of mortals as a rule 
felt in the end pestered beyond human endurance, and, waxing 
hot and wrathful, "invited" Mr. Pond to leave the shop an 
invitation with which that worthy at once cheerfully complied ; 
however, only to return immediately after for a pennyworth of 
Epsom salts, for which he tendered a half-crown piece in payment. 
He was served, and got his change, and left with an excruciatingly 
polite bow, to return just in the same way, on the same errand, 
tendering another half-crown piece in payment. And so he came 
in and went out, and came in again sixteen times running, always 
on the same errand, with unruffled temper, and much punctilious 
courtesy, and always tendering a half-crown piece in payment. 
He told me afterwards that he had borrowed 2 in half-crown 
pieces from the publican opposite who knew him well. At last 
the unhappy chemist caved in. "Take your order, Pond, for 
mercy's sake, and begone," he cried in comic despair. Pond 
gratefully acknowledged the chemist's " kind compliance with his 
humble request," and, adding insult to injury, offered poor 
Richards his Epsom salts purchased back at half-price ! 

This same Richards, I was told some years after (relata refero) 



280 REMINISCENCES OF 

got the largest compensation (comparatively) ever known to have 
been paid for expropriation, out of the London, Chatham and 
Dover Kailway Company. They (the L. C. D.) had purposely 
omitted from their Bill his house, as they thought at the time 
they would not absolutely want it, and might get it for a mere 
song from the owner, since the immediate contiguity to the 
intended new Ludgate Hill station was thought by these very 
clever people not to be the exact thing to improve the value of 
the property. Eichards tried hard to obtain reasonable terms 
from them ; but they would not listen to reason, until they 
suddenly discovered that they could not possibly do without the 
place. Then he would not listen to reason and they had to pay 
him his own price in the end ; so I was told, at least. 

I had a sneaking compassion for the Company at the time ; 
but they have since made me suffer so much on their cursed line 
the worst managed and least punctual to time in the kingdom 
in pocket, temper, and patience, that I feel now heartily glad 
of this little misadventure of theirs at the time, and only wish 
they had had to pay twice as much. It is not very long since 
that they kept me waiting at Kamsgate one hour and ten minutes 
for the last local train at night? putting me to above ten shillings 
expense, yet coolly refusing all compensation, sneeringly referring 
me to their solicitor, though they knew full well that the delay 
was utterly inexcusable, and altogether the result of their own 
negligence. Of course they relied upon the very natural dis- 
inclination of people of limited means to go to law with a long- 
pursed, unscrupulous body-corporate, which proverbially has no 
body to be kicked, no soul to be saved. 

Eichard Eatcliff Pond discovered one day that he was lineally 
descended from the ill-fated Earl of Derwentwater. He eagerly 
set about establishing the fact and the unbroken legitimacy of 
his descent. I verily believe the affair cost several hundred 
pounds. When it was all clear as daylight, he found out, a little 
late in the day, that though he might succeed in making good his 
claim to the title and peerage, there was not the remotest chance 
of ever recovering an acre of the property, forfeited upon 
attainder, and given to Greenwich Hospital. As he was a sensible 
man, he let the shadow go, when he found that he could never 
grasp the substance. 

I met Sala one day in the Strand. I asked him had he seen 
Pond ? " No," he replied, " I have not, but he sent the viscount 
to me for the loan of five shillings." 

The " viscount " is a young man now of some thirty-five. I 
have known him from his earliest infancy. When he was a boy 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 281 

of nine, I saw him one evening at Drury Lane. It was during 
one of his father's managerial speculations. "What are you 
doing here, Dickie ? " I asked. " Looking after father's interests," 
the little fellow replied, with imperturbable gravity that would 
have done honour to the great Kichard Ratcliff himself. And, 
indeed, he is to this present day looking after father's interests ; 
he is the stay and support of the family whom poor Pond left 
behind with but scanty provision. 

Pond was hand and glove with all artistic and literary Bohemia. 
He once engaged the Broughs, the Mayhews, me, and a lot of 
others of our set, to contribute to a new literary enterprise of his. 
" I cannot afford to pay you grandly for your papers, my boys," 
he told us with charming frankness, " but whenever you want a 
shilling, ask it of me." And we did ask him, with such laudable 
assiduousness, indeed, that he was in the end compelled to alter 
the mode of payment. " Look ye here, Bob," he said one day to 
Robert Brough ; " I think I had better give you ten shillings a 
page than go on responding to your askings, and I am sure I 
shall have to do the same with the other chaps." 

On Punchinello, which was Peter Morrison's spec at the time, 
we were paid by the printer and manager, Mr. Archibald Hay 
Jack, upon superficial measurement computation. Quantity, not 
quality, was Master Jack's motto. Lomax sent in one day rather 
a good thing, really witty and sparkling. When he presented him- 
self on pay-day for the reward of merit, Archibald Hay smilingly 
said to him, "Ah, Muster Lomax, ye ha cum for yer dues. It 
maks ninepence by superficial measurement, but we'll gie ye a 
shilling ! " Well, the language which that unlucky shilling drew 
from Lomax was a caution to Jack, who had to take refuge at 
last in the back office. 

On one occasion the great Peter Morrison gave a grand enter- 
tainment to the Punchinello staff of contributors. The banquet 
was spread in the first-floor front of the Angel and Sun in the 
.Strand, an inn kept by a Mrs. Partridge, in which we much liked 
to take our ease at the time. The spread comprised all the deli- 
cacies of the season, including rumpsteak and tripe and onions. 
There were lashings and lavings of liquor-materials ample and 
to spare, for emulative punch brews, in which I pitted myself 
against Thomas Littleton Holt and Archibald Hay Jack, both 
great " punchers " in their way, but nothing compared to me of 
course, bless you ! We had a great night of it, and a good time, 
AS the Yankees have it. Archibald Hay Jack attended as manager 



282 REMINISCENCES OF 

of the paper, and representative of the proprietor, who was. 
unavoidably prevented from enjoying the treat of our superior 
intellectual society and brilliant colloquial faculties. It was 
indeed a nox cretd albd notanda. There was a river of flow of 
soul, and we grew quite sentimental towards morning ; and I 
remember we adjourned at last in a body to "Waterloo Bridge to- 
moralize upon the sad lessons of the third arch on the Middlesex 
si de, and upon the final nothingness of all things. 

I cannot recollect exactly whether it was on this occasion that 
George Augustus Sala first took it into his head to dub poor 
Archibald Hay Dr. Jack. But I know it was about this time that 
he became to all of us familiarly known as Dr. Jack ; and he took 
kindly to the academic degree benevolently bestowed upon him 
by G. A. S. But, alas ! the whirligig of time brings with it its 
revenges, sometimes rather strange ones. Years after there arose- 
a trifling difficulty between Archibald Hay and Benjamin Clayton 
the engraver, another old crony of mine, and the third in the 
Chat Triumvirate. The law having been called in to decide ,. 
Archibald Hay found himself one fine day in the witness-box* 

with the redoubtable Serjeant cross-questioning him. 

" Now attend to me, sir," said the great advocate, with a por- 
tentous frown, " and mind how you answer this question. Have 
you ever assumed a title and degree to which you were not and 
are not entitled ? " " Never," replied Archibald Hay boldly ~ 
" What, sir ! Do you mean to tell his lordship and the gentlemen 
of the jury that you have never been known as Dr. Jack ? " 

" Mr. Sala," began the witness briskly, a sudden light breaking 
upon him, " Mr. Sala " " I did not ask you about Mr. Sala, sir I '* 
cried the advocate sternly. " I want a plain straightforward 
answer to a plain straightforward question, sir. I ask you again, 
have you ever been known as Dr. Jack ? " Well, the poor witness 
got confused, as who would not, under the circumstances ? He 
tried to explain, but the crafty Serjeant cut short his attempt, 
saying, in his well-known grand moral indignation manner, " No 
need to explain, sir ; I do not wish to pursue the subject any 
further. You may stand down." Now, the poor man's advocate 
knew not what to make of this, and deemed it the more prudent 
course to abstain from further questioning on his part ; and the 
judge evidently thought this assumed doctorate had an ugly look 
about it. As to the jury, the impression on their minds clearly 
was that the witness was one of those pestilent quacks who adver- 
tise their advice and nostrums in public and private places so. 
they incontinently found against him. Some time after I met 
Archibald Hay accidentally in Piccadilly. I playfully called him 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 28* 

Dr. Jack, as of old. He gave me a fierce look, turned on his heel, 
and cut me dead. 

Pond had a curious hankering after the acquaintance of 
notorious offenders, whom he would occasionally inopinately 
introduce to his friends to the no small embarrassment of the 
latter. Thus he kept me for two hours in the company of a 
gentleman who had just re-entered society after a five years' 
inspection of the inside of one of Her Majesty's jails, where he- 
had been sent for some rather heinous office. He was a school- 
master by profession, and he looked every whit as truculent as 
Eugene Sue's infamous schoolmaster in the " Mysteries of Paris."" 
On another occasion he introduced to me a Mr. Manning, brother 
to the notorious murderer of the exciseman Connor. I had told 
him repeatedly I did not like it, but he only laughed, and went 
on just the same. So I determined to be even with him if ever 
an opportunity should offer. 

One day I chanced to enter Debenham and Storr's auction 
rooms just when an odd collection of silk handkerchiefs seven- 
teen in number, of every conceivable pattern was up for sale. 
The bid being comparatively low, I went in for it, and secured 
the fall of the hammer at a most moderate cost. I stowed my 
purchase away as best I could in a variety of pockets, and 
went on my way rejoicing. Passing the Coach and Horses in the 
Strand one of our favourite places of resort at the time I 
looked into the parlour, and found several of our set there re- 
freshing, among others, Kichard Batcliff Pond, and with him a 
gentleman of unquestionable clerical cut. I knew afterwards 
that he was a vicar and rural dean from the country, come up to 
London to sell or swop his living, and had been advised to apply 
to Pond, who had brought him to the pub clearly against his will 
and inclination. He looked most uncomfortably embarrassed, 
and very much like a fish out of his native element. Here was 
my chance at last, I thought. So when Pond, after the custo- 
mary introduction to his new friend, asked me as he was wont to 
do, how I was getting on, I replied, reflectingly, " Well, Pond, I 
have no reason to complain. Times are rather hard, yet I think 
this not so very bad for an hour's work in Regent Street. You 
are an expert hand at it, Pond, but I believe I may say even you 
could not beat this for time, number, or quality ; " and I deliber- 
ately emptied my pockets on the table, spreading out my silks to 
display them to the best advantage. "I trust I am among 
friends," I added, with well-acted sudden apprehensiveness. 
There was a shout of laughter ; but Clericus cast a troubled look 
first upon me, then upon Pond, and finally upon the rest of the- 



284, REMINISCENCES OF 

company present ; then he snatched up his hat and fairly bolted, 
and Pond, who followed in hot chase, had the devil's own trouble 
to persuade the man out of his belief that he had got among a 
band of pickpockets. 

I became better acquainted in time with his rural deanship, 
had to come up several times to the metropolis for a length- 
ened stay before he could complete his little clerico-commercial 
transaction. I found that he was rather austerely given. He 
reproved me repeatedly for having, even in joke, tried to pass 
myself off for an expert pickpocket. He told me that in his 
magisterial capacity unhappily the dangerous power of the 
Bench is in this country indiscriminately entrusted to clergymen, 
the most unfit, certainly, of all the great unpaid for the trust and 
the power he made it a rule to visit the pettiest larceny even 
with the heaviest punishment in his discretion! What an abuse 
of terras, to be sure ! I could not forbear telling him once 
that, although no doubt it was very wrong to steal a cabbage, 
or poach, or pick a pocket, I could not, in my benighted mind, 
exactly see how it could be held to be morally so very, very much 
worse than trafficking in church livings. He blushed scarlet, and 
cut the discussion short and he cut me, and told Pond after- 
wards I was a child of hell. Good, pious, moral vicar and dean ! 
How could I ever have found it in my heart to hurt his sensitive 
feelings? I would have craved his pardon, but that I know 
priests never forgive. 

Pond had a tail of retainers and hangers-on whom his bounty 
kept from starving. Among these was a poor fellow of the name 
of Thompson, one of the unlucky hoverers on the perilous 
boundary between genius and idiocy. He had a turn for the 
literature of the prize-ring, for " destructive chemistry," and for 
projectiles and weapons of war, more particularly cannon. In- 
deed, he could turn his hand to a great many things, only, 
unhappily for the man, the knack of gaining a decent living for 
himself was not one of the many. We, all of us, took an interest 
in him, and assisted him to the best of our necessarily limited 
ability. Sala, more notably, was very kind to him. As his 
outer casing was rather dilapidated, George Augustus, always 
great at nicknaming people, generously bestowed upon it, along 
with a pair of good serviceable trousers, the mysterious letters 
E. A., as a species of designatory appendage to his name. In 
time these letters grew to become an inseparable part of the 
man Thompson, in the same way as the " Dr." stuck to Archibald 
Hay Jack, despite all his efforts to kick it off after his sad 
experience in the witness-box. Thompson, E. A., was an established 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 285 

personage all about the purlieus of Wellington Street. People 
were divided in opinion whether the poor man was a sadly 
reduced member of the Royal Academy, or whether he belonged 
to the Royal Artillery. Most inclined to the latter opinion, 
seeing his artilleristic tendencies. Why, even the high and 
mighty authorities of the Woolwich Arsenal addressed him 
as " Thompson, Esq., R.A." Yea, indeed, he had letters addressed 
to him by the said high and mighty, etc., for he had submitted to 
them some improvements in our artillery, which surely must 
have been deemed at the time the Crimean war period 
sufficiently important to warrant the inventor being summoned 
three or four times to Woolwich to explain his invention, and 
to bring it to a practical test. The affair came to nothing in the 
end, for before the high and mighty could make up their minds, , 
the war came to an end, and there really was then no further 
urgent need of improvements in our cannon. Thompson was 
benefited, however, to the extent of a suit of black, liberally 
presented to him by Pond, for which an avuncular relation of his 
supplied him with sufficient means to enjoy himself in his own 
way for a full fortnight. One morning the poor fellow was found 
dead matiere de breviaire and my old friend and once employer 
Wakley sat upon his remains. Thomas happened to be in a 
sentimental mood. " Sad, sad ! " said he, in a kind of regretful 
soliloquy, " most sad ! So this unhappy man was a member of 
the Royal Academy. One would hardly think such things 
possible ! " Now, Joe Stammers was one of the witnesses sum- 
moned to the inquest. He also was in a sentimental mood, plus 
the " dhrop of the crathur as turns the ballince." So he deemed 
it incumbent upon him to correct the coroner's erroneous im- 
pression as to the cabalistic R.A. Then the mighty Thomas arose 
in his wrath. " Take that man into custody ! " he shouted to the 
officer ; " I commit him for gross contempt of court ! " It took a 
deal of explanation to appease the coroner's fierce anger, and even 
after the matter had been most fully explained to him he sternly 
reproved " poor Joe" for the " revolting plainness" of his language 
in one of the highest and most ancient courts of the land, the 
coroner's to wit ; for if ever there was a public officer with a. 
proper sense of the dignity of his office, Thomas Wakley was the 
man. 

It was to poor Thompson that I was indebted for an intro- 
duction to one of the heroes of the period, the redoubtable Tom 
Sayers, then in training for some great fight or other. The- 
gallaut Tom had become possessed, promiscuously, as Mrs. 
Brown would say, of a stereoscopic apparatus, which he wished 



286 REMINISCENCES OF 

to dispose of. Thompson, a friend of the bruiser, thought I 
might be able to assist his chum in the matter. I went to look 
at the apparatus, and had the signal honour of " two hours with 
the champion," who took to me kindly, swore that I was one of 
the right sort, and nobly offered to give me a few wrinkles in the 
noble art of self-defence, that would make me a match for any 
man of my own weight another opportunity perversely rejected 
by me to achieve fame. Tom bore me no malice, however, for 
declining his generous offer ; for ere he left for Australia, after 
his Homeric combat with the unlucky Yankee giant, he insisted 
upon a farewell breakfast with me. 

I have known other famous members of the ring such as, 
for instance, another fighter of American giants, the redoubtable 
Perry, called the " Tipton Slasher," to wit, a great man in his 
time he measured five feet ten in his stockings, if I. misre- 
member not who kindly rescued me once from the clutches of a 
cowardly bully, or rather from a couple of cowardly bullies, for 
there were two of them, the one meanly kicking my shins " acci- 
dentally" while I was desperately striving to keep the other from 
mauling my face. It was at the Russell Coffee House in Great 
Windmill Street, a place famous at the time for the most juicy 
and tender steaks to be had anywhere within three miles round. 
The Slasher lived at the house. He came in for his dinner. He 
soon settled the hash of both my assailants, who, I am quite 
sure, had they but thought I had so valiant a friend and one so 

cunning in fence, would have seen me d d ere they'd have 

challenged me for a d d French frog-eater. In those days, 

you see, that wondrously gashing brotherly feeling was still 
unborn which years after sent the two peoples cheek-by-jowl 
and back to back to the Crimea, to fight the " Rooshans"* 
but which, to judge from present appearances, was not quite so 
genuine after all, and so absolutely free from mental reservation 
at least on the part of our Gallic brethren as it was made to 
look at the time. 

Then there was Evans young Dutch Sam a rather more 

* The late Charles Kerrison Sala, in his curious little squib yclept 
*' The Fish," made poor Colonel Sibthorp deliver the tag in the following 
lines, if I remember aright : 

If we fishes have offended, 
Let your favours be extended. 
Large blue beans are called Prooshans, 
So let's go and whack the llooshaiis ; 
Which dolce faal mio cor. 
Farewell, our mimic scene is o'er. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 287 

gentlemanly sample of the article, who consulted me more than 
once in his last fatal illness, and expressed himself most warmly 
grateful to me for the little temporary relief of his sufferings 
which my humble skill could afford him. 

Then there was Deaf Burke, with whom I became acquainted 
through my old friend, Eichardson, D.D., of the Times, and 
whose gratitude I acquired by standing to him an occasional 
<chop or steak, instead of dosing him everlastingly with drink, 
as others of his patrons were wont to do. He told me his ex- 
perience in and of the prize-ring except always the sad episode 
of a certain fatal fight which he never would mention. 

I also knew in my time Owen Swift, then champion of the 
light weights, Tom Spring, big Ben Gaunt, and many more of 
the fighting brotherhood ; and I must say that, although I have 
hit occasionally upon an unmitigated ruffian among them, as a 
rule I found them very much like most other men, with some of 
the best and gentlest feelings of our common humanity in them. 
No doubt it must always be shocking to a sensitive mind to see 
men endowed with reason and sense pound and maul away at 
one another for hire, to pander to a depraved public taste, and 
enable noble Corinthians to combine indulgence in the national 
foible of betting with the elevating emotion of seeing strong men 
knocked down like ninepins and made to bleed like stuck pigs, 
with all the other sickening et ceteras of a good old-fashioned 
mill not to mention an occasional glorious chance of being 
in at the death of a gladiator on the field a gladiator with his 
fists for gladius. It is an old saying, that but for receivers there 
would be no thieves. But for backers, there would have been 
no prizefighters. Who could blame a poor ignorant fellow like 
Burke or Sayers for deeming himself a hero, when noble lords 
ay, and noble ladies too would encouragingly pat him on the 
back, and wealthy members of the Stock Exchange and merchant 
princes and City magnates make rich collections to rewardl a 
Sayers for a slightly doubtful victory over a blinded Yankee 
Polyphemus ; when the world's leading journal would specially 
despatch the most graphic of its graphic reporters, Nicholas 
Wood, to the " field," that he might sing the battle in Homeric 
strains ; and when the rest of the press, with a very few honour- 
able exceptions, would enthusiastically follow suit, and indulge 
in double-leaded leaders, chanting the praises of the great British 
fisticuff champion against the world in general and America in 
particular ? 

It was Richard Ratcliff Pond I like to bestow unstintingly 
upon the man all his baptismal belongings who first brought me 



288 REMINISCENCES OF 

in contact with George Augustus Sala. That child of genius 
si jamaia il en fut was then Marryat's factotum on Chat chief,, 
if not only, contributor to the paper, and editor and publisher of 
it. He was then a mere youth, but he wrote with marvellous 
vigour, playful humour, and charming freshness. I firmly believe- 
it would be worth a publisher's while and outlay to republish his 
" Australian Nights " entertainments, and his small chapters of 
London life, such as " Findings are Keepings,*' and others of the 
same amusing stamp. 

I think it was in the last days of March, 1848, that the 
proprietor of Chat, in conjunction with the editor and Pond, con- 
trived to perpetrate a vile hoax upon Her Majesty's lieges These 
wretched conspirators had a great number of order-cards printed, 
admitting " bearer and friends " to the White Tower, on the 1st 
day of April, to witness, if they so listed, the famous grand annual 
ceremony of washing the lions. I am sorry to say that I was 
over-easily prevailed upon to join in the distribution of these 
favours among friends and acquaintances. 

We went to Tower Hill in the morning of the 1st of April to 
watch the result. I must confess I, for one, was not prepared for 
the extraordinary credulity of the British Public. They flocked 
up in shoals to see the lions washed. The "warders" were almost 
at their wits' ends. They had the bits of pasteboard flourished 
in their faces, with angry gestures and angrier imprecations, by 
the indignant crowd of sight-seers and seekers. I verily believe 
there was a notion at one time of the day to send for reinforce- 
ments of the garrison, so threatening was the aspect of the B. P. 
raging at the gates of the old City fortress. In the midst of the 
turmoil some one spotted me to whom I had given an order of" 
admission, and he would have set the whole mob upon me, but I 
most luckily succeeded in securing the friendly shelter of a cab,, 
which I made drive off instanterlfrom the field of action, knowing 
of old that discretion is, as a rule, the better part of valour. The 
final result to me was, that I had to skedaddle, and keep dark for 
a time, until the affair had blown over a little. 

There was a small pub in the Strand, the famous old Dolly 
Chop House, then kept by a Mr. Dormer, one of the nicest and 
most obliging Bonifaces it has ever been my good fortune to come 
across. Well, the two young ladies behind the bar had somehow 
been weak enough to invite all their country cousins to the great 
sight of the lion-washing, and they were, of course, correspond- 
ingly wroth. Mrs. Dormer espoused their cause, and nothing 
would do to satisfy her outraged feelings but an attack direct 
upon poor innocent me. " I can understand how Mr. Sala could 
have been led to join in a most cruel practical joke like this," 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 289 

said the irate lady to me ; " he is a mere youth ; but an old man 
like you, sir, you should not have done it you should not indeed." 
It has been my fate through life to be made a scapegoat for other 
men's ay, and women's too offences. 

Poor Mrs. Dormer ! In an evil hour her husband was induced 
somehow to leave the old chop-house for the Old Dog, in Holywell 
Street, a defunct pub of the past, which was said and believed to 
occupy the identical spot where once in ancient times sparkled 
the original holy well. Dormer dug up once again the " sacred " 
old spring, and he dug his o*wn grave. Father Mathew, Sir 
"Wilfrid Lawson, the Good Templars, the Band of Hope, the 
Alliance, the Salvation Army, and the great Cardinal, had no 
existence as yet, or were not quite so much to the fore then aa 
they are now, and water unqualified remained still at a con- 
siderable discount at the time. Nobody cared much about tasting 
the produce of the Holy Well, and poor Dormer soon saw black 
ruin staring him in the face; and being a man, unhappily, o 
sensitively strung nerves, he could not face the cruel disappoint- 
ment of all his hopes. So he went away ere he was called. It 
was a most sad thing for his unhappy widow. I have long since 
freely forgiven her calling me an old man more than thirty-four 
years ago. 

Some forty years since I lived in High Street, Netting Hill. 
There was a pert little servant-maid in the house. 

One day I heard her mistress ask her had she done the 
gentleman's rooms. Judge my indignation when I heard the 
minx reply, in Irish fashion : " Is it the little old Frenchman you 
mean?" 

I have mentioned that it was the late Frederick Gye who had 
first brought me in contact with William Maugham. 

I had known Gye distantly for years, chiefly in connection 
with the fairy gardens of Vauxhall, one of the few green spots of 
old London, now long since improved away, and turned into vile 
brick and mortar the greater the pity, I think. In those halcyon 
days of yore, Frederick Gye was the ingenious magician who 
lighted up, season after season, so many thousand additional 
flames in the grounds, so that the garden looked in the end a 
perfect Light-mere or lAclitmeer, as the Germans have it. Since 
those days I had lost sight and touch of Gye, who, after the great 
Tamburini row and the irreparable breach between Lumley and 
the principal singers, of Her Majesty's Theatre in the Hay- 
market, had suddenly burst upon the London world as a most 
accomplished and successful manager of Grand and Italian 
Opera. 



290 REMINISCENCES OF 

In 1852 Johanna Wagner, daughter of Albert, and niece of 
the great Richard, made an engagement with Lumley, at twelve 
hundred pounds for the operatic season in London. The gentle- 
man who acted as agent in the matter was a certain Dr. Bacher, 
who professed to be a warm and true friend to the Wagner 
family. The arrangement had been properly concluded ere Gye, 
who was also in hot chase after the new Grand Opera celebrity, 
appeared on the scene. Finding that he had been forstalled, he 
withdrew at once, simply mentioning to Albert Wagner that had 
he been in time, he would willingly have paid Johanna down two 
thousand pounds for the season. This, of course, made a deep 
impression upon Albert Wagner, who had de facto made it a 
condition precedent that a proportionate payment should be made 
des le deux M ars, meaning, simply, on the 2nd day of March at 
the latest. 

Lumley failed to make the payment, and Albert Wagner 
considered the contract at an end ; and he was strictly in his 
right. He applied to Gye, stating in the most distinct and 
explicit way that he had definitely broken off all negotiations 
with Lumley, and was free to accept the offer made by the 
Covent Garden manager. So Gye, having lodged his two- 
thousand pounds, might well be justified in flattering himself 
that he had secured the great German star for his own temple of 
music and song. 

But he had reckoned without that most important element in 
English contracts, the great Court of Equity, which in those days 
happened to be rather over-prone to grant restraining injunctions r . 
occasionally upon very slender grounds. 

Now Albert Wagner had written a certain letter to Dr. Bacher,. 
in which there occurred the passage, "England gilt nur durch 
Geld." Bacher handed this letter to Lumley. Mr. Albert translated 
the German words given here somewhat to the following effect : 
" But for her money England is of no account." This incensed 
the great British public against Wagner and his daughter ; and, 
not at all unlikely, turned the wavering Yice-Ohancellorean 
balance against Gye. The injunction was granted. 

Gye saw that in his efforts to have it dissolved he had to fight 
against the prejudice thus created, and he cast about him for a 
translator who might put a different, less offensive, construction 
upon the unlucky expression in the letter. 

I was recommended to him as a likely party to do the trick. 

Now it so happened that Wagner pere wrote a most infamous 
fist, almost as bad as my own and he indulged in abbreviations, 
which I never do ; so for Johanna he wrote what looked very 
much like Tab, and for Fides, Johanna's famous part in the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 291 

Prophet, he wrote Fid. Mr. Albert was thus led to translate, 
" Tab is better than Fid," in lieu of " Johanna prefers Fides " 
(i.t. the part of Fides). At the end of the letter he informed 
Bacher that Johanna was slightly ailing, and finished up : " So 
miissen Sie mit meiner Pfote fiirlieb nehmen," which of course 
simply mean to say, " So you must put up with my scrawl," but 
which Mr. Albert had rendered, " So I shake your paw." There 
were other though more trifling inaccuracies in the Albertean 
translation. Upon the strength of these, and taking my stand 
upon my knowledge of obsolete German, which I had in its time 
acquired by the glimmer of the midnight lamp, I procured an 
old German-English Dictionary, to prove that gelten was quite 
legitimate for vergelten to reward, to requite, to pay, and that 
what Albert Wagner had really meant to convey by the passage in 
his letter which was being assailed so vigorously was simply 
that money was the only remuneration even the greatest artist 
had to expect in England, and that he or she must absolutely 
renounce all notion of precious acknowledgments by rulers 
imperial, royal, and princely and of high social consideration. 

Well, the Vice-Chancellor shrugged his shoulders and gave 
expression to the profound apophthegm that " when doctors dis- 
agree, it is difficult to decide ;" and Lord St. Leonards, at a later 
period of the case, was kind enough to pay me the high compli- 
ment that I had presented the court with a most ingenious 
paraphrase of the original meaning of Albert Wagner. 

The injunction, however, stood notwithstanding, and poor 
Gye found himself some two thousand five hundred pounds out 
of pocket by the transaction. Not alone this, but Lumley, for- 
sooth, must bring an action against him for heavy damages for 
having deprived him of the most valuable services of the great 
German singer. 

Now this really was too bad. If Lumley had completed his 
contract, as he ought to have done, in proper time, Gye would 
never have dreamt of trying to engage Johanna Wagner for 
Covent Garden. But he did not complete his contract ; he did 
not fulfil the condition precedent, which at once eo ipso vitiated 
the entire affair. Yet this man, who in law and in equity had 
released Johanna Wagner from her engagement by the nonfulfil- 
ment of the condition precedent, actually tried to take advantage 
of his own laches, and to make Gye pay him damages, Gye, who 
was absolutely innocent in the affair, and had already, through 
the inequitable proceedings in equity, been most unjustly mulcted 
in close upon three thousand pounds penalty. 

And Gye's chief difficulty in the matter was that Albert 
Wagner, having pocketed the two thousand pounds, declined 

u 2 



292 REMINISCENCES OF 

even to assist the man whom he had, in a measure, got into the 
mess, to get out of it. A commission was sent over to Berlin 
to take Albert and Johanna's evidence. Mr. Hayward was the 
commissioner appointed by Lord Campbell to take the evidence. 
The late Professor Creasy attended the commission as counsel 
for Gye, the present Baron Huddleston as counsel for Lumley. 
Mr. Tamplin, Gye's solicitor, and his clerk, Mr. Beck, also 
attended the commission ; so did I as sworn interpreter. 

The commission came to nought. Albert Wagner, who was 
in reality the only party in evidence, as he completely and abso- 
lutely controlled his daughter, refused to answer, or allow his 
daughter to answer, any useful question; and his own legal 
adviser, and the Prussian law official appointed to direct the pro- 
ceedings, supported him in this refusal. So the commission had 
to go back to London re infectd. This was in November, 1853, if 
my memory misleads me not. 

In the beginning of February following I was sent over to 
Berlin and Hamburg by Gye's solicitor, to bring over from the 
latter place a witness whose evidence might become of importance 
to the defence, and to endeavour to get from Wagner his 
daughter's original contract with Gye, and other papers that 
might serve to put the case of the defence in a proper light 
before the court. I had the devil's own trouble to induce Albert 
Wagner to concede even this modicum of justice to the man 
whom he had most materially helped to injure. Wagner had a 
notion that Johanna might still appear one day on the boards of 
Her Majesty's, and, with the ingrained selfishness of his character 
and disposition, wished to avoid giving Lumley the least cause for 
offence. However, Johanna Wagner aided me to the best of her 
power and ability, and the legal gentleman who advised Wagner 
could not see why these important documents should be with- 
held. So at last 1 succeeded in getting most of them into my 
hands, and in obtaining Wagner's solemn promise to forward the 
original contract to London, for production in court. Now, when 
celerity of motion on my part was of the utmost importance, 
as the case was actually coming on at Guildhall before Lord 
Campbell, the Berlin police must, forsooth, take it into their 
confounded noddles to delay my departure from the Prussian 
capital. 

In 1851 I had been mixed up largely with the revolutionary 
leaders. It was at my place of residence, in the Robin Hood, 
Great Windmill Street, that the great German Agitation Union 
held its meetings. In fact, I functioned as secretary to that 
rather innocuous molehill of which the timid German Govern- 
ments of the period were striving to make a huge mountain. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 293 

They did me the honour at that time to set a special watch 
upon me, and actually to engage the great Bucket of Bleak 
House celebrity to take note of all my proceedings. Not con- 
tent with this, they set a lot of low scamps loose upon me, to get 
scraps of my handwriting into their possession. And the great 
Stieber himself came over to ensnare me in his toils. Unluckily 
for him, like Thales of Mileton, while spying the astronomy of 
my windows, he discerned not a pit at his feet, dug in the street 
and left unguarded by some careless workman, and tumbled into 
it, to the great injury of his shins and knee-joints, for the which, 
it appeared, he now wished to lay me by the heels as a suspicious 
character; only, happily for me, this weasel had never been 
asleep, so the great Stieber failed to catch the animal napping. 
Still he well-nigh prevented my appearance at Guildhall in proper 
time. 

Strange enough, even Lord Campbell seemed wondrously 
inclined to side with Lumley, for when authoritative evidence was 
placed before the court and jury in proof of the plain, unmis- 
takable, and unalterable meaning of de'a, anglice not later 
than or not after, the Chief Justice went out of his way in sum- 
ming up by suggesting to the jury that Albert Wagner, not 
being an accomplished French scholar, evidently, ought not to be 
held to be quite so much up to the niceties and subtleties of the 
French language ! Luckily for Gye, the jury were men of strong 
common sense, who had a notion that a man like Wagner would 
be apt to consult a dictionary, and to use the term which would 
best render his intended meaning. So they found for the 
defendant. 

" If I can ever do anything for you in my vacations," said 
Johanna Wagner to Gye, in my presence, "you may freely com- 
mand my services gratis. I should so much like to somehow 
make up this heavy loss to you." Her father was not present on 
the occasion. Well, a great misfortune befell Gye. Covent Garden 
was burnt down, and he had to seek a temporary refuge at the 
Lyceum. Of course, all the artists came nobly forward and 
offered their services at comparatively not much more than 
they would have got at the Garden. Grisi, more especially f 
generously forbore claiming more than a paltry four thousand 
pounds for the season ! So Gye thought under the circumstances 
he might have a try for Johanna Wagner's six weeks' vacation. 
He asked me to make out an account of what it would come to to 
bring Johanna, her father, and her maid over here, to keep them 
in style for six weeks, and send them back again to their own 
land. Well, I could not by any possibility reasonably make more 
than two hundred pounds of it. Gye multiplied this by three, 



294 BEMINISCENCES OF 

and authorised me to offer the lady six hundred pounds travelling 
and incidental expenses. The pere nolle' s reply was simply to the 
effect that he wondered Mr. G-ye could insult his daughter by 
such an offer. And in due season Johanna appeared at Her 
Majesty's in the Haymarket. 

All these things happened to fall within my personal ken. 
Yet how many times have I heard people pity " poor Lumley," 
and come down heavily upon the unscrupulous Gye, whose 
"grasping and envious disposition" alone could have induced 
him to mislead the unsuspecting Albert Wagner, and mar the 
brightly promising prospects of the manager of Her Majesty's ! 

I think it was in the early part of 1857 that George Augustus 
Sala and Eobert Brough perpetrated between them, in alternate 
stanzas, a grand epic poem, a slightly libellous production in 
rhyme, called by them " The End of all Things," of which, there 
is, unhappily, now only one complete copy extant, in the posses- 
sion of the survivor of the twin poets. The two noble Bohemians 
themselves are introduced first. They are just returning from 
Belgium,* where they have somehow managed "by crook" to 
illegally and immorally annex the rather odd sum of ninety 
thousand francs. They are correspondingly elated, and nobly 
bent upon nobly spending their ill-gotten wealth. They scorn to 
travel by rail, or any ordinary means of conveyance. They 
grandly post it in a coach and four. 

On the road from Dover to London they stop to refresh. A 
rich banquet is commanded by them, including the highest and 
the lowest eatables and drinkables : 

They ordered ortolans and tripes, 
Fish, joints, and wines, and penny swipes, 
And fruit and cheese galore. 

Taking a stroll before dinner, they unexpectedly chance to 
meet William Eomer, who is humbly tramping the country. 
They stand treat to him, of course, and he tells them, in return 
for their hospitality, the several fortunes of their friends whom 
they left behind on their departure for foreign parts many years 
before. The rhymed narrative which poor Bill is supposed to 
pour into their amazed ears is quite a gem in its way. Barely 
one of their friends escapes the lash applied, indeed, for the 
most part, with perfect good nature and good humour, but occa- 
sionally with a slight dose of venenum in caudd. 

* I write this, of course, from memory. My friend Draper tells me 
it was from " Pongo, in Japan," the two heroes were returning. It may 
be so. I therefore give my own version simply pro tanto. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 295 

Unfortunately, I remember only a few stanzas and snatches 
here and there that I may venture to print. There is a stanza 
about John Deffet Francis, for instance : 

Francis, his dream of high art past, 
Now paints for pot-boiling at last ; 

Not that his pictures sell. 
He, with warm duds beneath his rags, 
Draws Christ and mackerel on the flags, 

And does extremely well. 

William Brough is stated to have gone into the coal trade, like 
Micawber : 

Bill's coals and jokes were both found small, 
So Bill went simply to the wall ; 

George Bridgeman did not pay. 
Big Doyle went to the utter bad, 
And Jamie Davison went mad, 
And Draper went away. 

Benjamin "Webster comes in for something. That excellent 
actor-manager fancied at the time that he had, by a lucky chance, 
become possessor of a rich lead-mine. In allusion to this, Bill 
Homer is made to report : 

'Twas found that Webster's mine of lead 
Existed only in his head 
Betwixt the skull and brain. 

Thomas Littleton Holt and Watts Phillips have a few lines 
specially bestowed upon them : 

Holt was informed upon by Watts : 
Some said it was for pewter pots ; 
I think 'twas only wipes. 

Counsel is stated to have been engaged for Holt's defence ; 
the said counsel being some impecunious Bohemian party, who 
had to get up the paraphernalia of his profession by the charitable 
contributions of his friends. The gown he borrows of one friend, 
the wig of another, who himself possesses only one. This friend, 
a most excellent fellow and good and true Bohemian, though son 
of one of the most eminent clerical pluralists of the time, is 
named in the poem as the party of whom the wig has been bor- 
rowed. The narrative then proceeds, in connection with him : 

Who, when his seveii years were out, 
A moaning maunderer mooned about, 

And borrowed shirts and cried 
'Til gin-and-water on the brain 
Released him from all earthly pain. 

He drivelled till he died. 



236 REMINISCENCES OF 

Then there is a mysterious allusion to Godfrey Turner, in 
connection with the supposed loss of an old shoe and the finding 
of a new one Abool Casern fashion : 

And Godfrey Turner lost his shoe, 
And found another which was new, 
So was not his at all ! 

My humble self is disposed of in a way which, should it ever 
happen to me, would certainly be a most uncomfortable termi- 
nation to my mortal career : 

But, oh ! the melancholy end 

Of Doctor S , our ancient friend, 

That man of mickle mind : 
A cloven-footed horned swell 
The doctor took, an awful smell 

Of brimstone left behind. 

And so Bill Eomer's narrative goes on to the last line : 
And Pond has got the Times ; 

which either might signify that Eichard Eatcliff Pond had then 
come to be looked upon as a kind of general undertaker to mori- 
bund publications even the great Times must be taken to come 
to that pass with "The End of all Things" or might be meant 
to symbolize the toweringly ambitious aspirations of the man 
Pond, who was, perhaps, a little over-fond of speculating in 
theatres and newspapers. 

Having thus made fun of all their friends and acquaintances 
without exception, the twin poets must have thought it high time 
to do something to appease the natural indignation of the victims 
of their satire ; for the poem winds up, like Hood's dream of 
Eugene Aram, with four stern-faced men, etc. 

And Brough and Sala walked between, 
With gyves upon their wrists. 

The Savage Club was founded in 1857. As it has achieved 
sufficient fame to call forth some interest in its origin and rise,, 
and as several versions have been placed before the public, more 
or less authoritatively, I crave permission here to give my own 
version of the facts to the best and truest of my recollection and 
belief. As I have had occasion to remark in an earlier part of 
these reminiscences, memory is a capricious faculty, and apt to 
prove treacherous and delusive ; I wish it to be distinctly under- 
stood, therefore, that I do not claim undeniable authenticity for 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 297 

my version, the less so as it differs most materially from that put 
forth by the distinguished writer of the " Echoes of the Week," 
in the Illustrated London News, who " speaks with authority on 
the matter." Let it be taken then simply pro tanto. 

About two years past, at the annual dinner of the Savage 
Club, M. Henri van Laun, in proposing the toast of " French 
Literature and the French Drama," stated incidentally that the 
club was named after Richard Savage. 

In the ensuing week's "Echoes," Mr. G. A. Sala told his 
esteemed friend Van Laun, that he was wholly in error, and that 
there never was any connection between the two names ; more- 
over, that his late lamented friend Robert Brough would have 
shrunk with horror from any association with the name of such 
a scamp as Richard Savage. I will not take the cudgels up here 
for the memory and fame of poor Dick Savage, but I must say 
that the lofty scorn and contempt for the unhappy Bohemian of 
last century, attributed to Robert Brough, must surely have 
taken its rise in a mis-remembrance of G. A. Sala. If the stern 
moralist, Samuel Johnson, could find it in his wide heart to 
sympathize with the misfortunes and sorrows of Richard Savage : 
surely Robert Brough, who had in his moral composition none of 
the sternness of the sturdy old doctor, but all his genuine good- 
ness and sterling humanity, would have been the last man to- 
entertain, much less profess, scorn and contempt for the ill-fated 
stray. 

In the first series of the " Savage Club Papers," the late 
Andrew Halliday, one of the original founders of the club, in 
stating his recollection of the formation of the club, says dis- 
tinctly that it was Robert Brough who adopted the notion of 
calling the " new institution " after Richard Savage, to show that 
there was no pride about us. 

I remember distinctly that in one of my heart effusions in the 
midst of the small knot of authors, journalists, and artists who 
used to meet some twenty-six or seven years since at the White 
Hart Tavern, I said, looking around me : "I see Otways before 
me who have not yet felt the want of a penny loaf, Chattertons 
guiltless of literary forgeries and suicidal thoughts, Savages, a great 
many Savages who have never yet seen the inside of a jail." These 
words of mine were incorporated in a speech attributed to me by 
Robert Brough, in a humorous paper of his in the first number 
of the Train, a monthly magazine started by a band of writers 
under the leadership of Edmund Yates.* It was Robert Brough 

* Edmund Yates, I am happy to say, ranks among my best and 
Btaunchcst old friends. He has more than once taken my defence when 
I have been unfairly assailed by powerful adversaries. What thongk 



298 REMINISCENCES OF 

who, at a later period, when we contemplated forming ourselves 
into a club, suggested (not as Halliday states in the preface to the 
first series of the " Savage Club Papers," adopted) Richard 
Savage for our godfather. And it was John Deffet Francis, a 
very old and very dear friend of mine, happily still to the fore, 
whp suggested the alternative meaning of the name. ." If we 
mean," he said as reported by Halliday, only erroneously put 
into the mouth of Robert Brough " that we are scevi, why then 
it will be a pleasant surprise for those who may join us to find 
the wigwam an abode of ' savages ' upon the lucus a non lucendo 
principle." 

John Deffet Francis also presented the new "reunion" in- 
continently with a choice assortment of tomahawks, boomerangs, 
assegais, and other weapons of savage warfare. 

John Deffet Francis' idea underlies the conception of the 
frontispiece to the first series of the " Savage Club Papers," 
drawn by poor dear William Brunton, now, alas ! no more, and 
engraved by the genial Dalziel Brothers. So much for the name 
of the club. 

Now, as regards the founders of the club, I much regret 
that I cannot make my recollection of the facts and circum- 
stances connected with the origin of the club tally with those 
of the distinguished writer of " Echoes," who affirms authori- 
tatively that he was one of the seven or eight founders of the club. 
I am convinced my most esteemed and very old friend Sala will 
pardon me if I venture to point out to him that the club took its 
first rise in the meetings of a certain number of literati and 
artists, and a few outsiders, at the White Hart Tavern, some 
twenty-six or seven years ago. If I can trust my memory, there 
were the four brothers Brough (William, Robert, John, and 
Lionel, the latter a mere youth at the time), Godfrey Turner, 
Andrew Halliday, T. Archer, Dr. Frank, J. D. Francis, Edward 
Draper, Charles Bennett, William M'Connell, James Kenney, 
W. Romer, Horace and Percy St. John, Augustus Mayhew, Gr. 
A. Sala, John Bridgeman, who would drop in occasionally, also 
F. Lawrence, R. Flinders (of Coutts' Bank), A. Flinders (of the 
East India House), H. N. Tooby (of Coutts'), Benjamin Clayton, 
and myself. All these might claim a right to figure among 

he be somewhat worldly now, he haa grown so of the World, the same as 
Sala once averred to have grown " streety " of the streets. 

Once upon a time witty Henry Byron came " promiscuously " upon 
three gentlemen walking arm-in-arm in Fleet Street : the man of the 
World to wit, the man of Truth, and stout Arthur Sketchley. " Be ye 
greeted," Byron cried, " ye three greatest enemies of man World, Flesh, 
and Devil." 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 299 

the founders of the club, at least among the original members. 
But if the term "founder" is meant to apply simply to the nine 
members who, on a certain day in the summer, 1857, went to the 
Crown Hotel, in Vinegar Yard, to arrange with the landlord of 
that place, Mr. Lawson, about the hiring of the first-floor front, 
then I, who can speak authoritatively upon the matter, seeing 
that I was one of the nine the other eight being J. Kenney, A. 
Flinders, Robert Brough, William Brough, Lionel Brough, W. 
Eomer, Dr. Frank, and Fred Lawrence can only say that Sala 
was not with us on that occasion, nor was Halliday. William 
Brough represented also Edward Draper, and I, to the best of 
my recollection, held Francis' proxy, Charley Bennett's, and 
Halliday's. Out of the thirteen here named, only four survive, to 
wit, Lionel Brough, Edward Draper, John Deffet Francis, and 
myself. I may add here that Lionel Brough's recollection of the 
fact tallies entirely with my own. 

So soon as preliminaries were settled we invited about eighty 
men of letters and artists to join us. Most of them accepted, and 
became ipso facto original members of the new club without 
ballot. I think the books of the club will bear me out in this. 
For a long time I was present at every sitting of the committee. 
There was no pretence originally about our new club. We made 
Halliday honorary secretary and treasurer. Our annual subscrip- 
tion was and remained for years ten shillings, and most of the 
members were always sadly in arrear even with that modest 
amount. Our Saturday dinners, which were one of the chief 
features of the new club, ranged from two shillings to half-a- 
crown ; our annual dinners from three-and-six to five shillings. 

Like true Bohemians, we were extensively migratory wan- 
dering from one hostelry to another. 

When my dear old chum Tegetmeier joined the club the 
treasurership was entrusted to him, which simply meant that he 
was authorised to pay the rent of the club-room, and other 
incidental expenses, out of his own pocket, and try to get his out- 
lay back again as best he might from the sadly arrearate members. 
When, after some five or six years, he ceded his truly honorary 
office to Charles Millward, we presented him with a microscope, 
in acknowledgment of his most excellent and most thoroughly 
disinterested services to the club. Yet such was our savage 
perversity that when Charles Quin proposed "that this testi- 
monial be presented to W. B. Tegetmeier for having for years 
embezzled the funds of the club," the worse than basely ungrateful 
resolution was carried by acclamation. 

My dear old friend Charles Millward, the new " treasurer,' 
succeeded to a most honorary quasi- sinecure, in so far as receipts 



300 REMINISCENCES OF 

were concerned at" least, in the first few years of his office, but 
to a most arduous responsibility in all matters connected with 
expenses, such as payment of rent, etc. Well, he "embezzled" 
the funds of the club for years in the same way as Teg had done 
before him, but by this time we had grown so callous in our 
ingratitude that we did not think even of presenting him with a 
testimonial. Nay, dear little Jeff Prowse, in the outrageous 
exuberance of his fancy, made him, in his letter from Nice, " figure 
again in the Divorce Court ! " Millward, of all men, whom we 
all knew to be most exemplary in all relations of domestic life. 
Charles Millward has been consistently kind to me ever since I 
knew him first, some twenty odd years ago. He gave me work 
on Porcupine at a time when the Bohemian soil was stony to me 
indeed. 

Yes, the Savage Club was a small acorn once, but it held 
within it the germ of the stately oak to which it appears to be 
growing now. I feel proud, indeed, when I think that I was one, 
albeit the humblest, of the band that planted the acorn and 
lovingly tended the young tree. 

In 1863 I presided over the annual Savages' dinner, my very 
excellent friend George Eose Arthur Sketchley alas ! now no 
more in the vice-chair. I remember it was a grand affair. The 
club mustered in great strength. Benjamin Webster was there 
he pleaded guilty to something like seventy then, if I mis- 
remember not ; he has grown younger since.* Dear old George 
Cruikshank was there too, bemusing himself with the Chinese 
shrub infusion, and preaching total abstinence to all around 
him. Colonel Eichards was there, and W. Wilson, and Elwes, 
and Watkins, and a host of others, including, of course, those 
staunch pillars of the noble institution, the then surviving three 
Broughs. Thomas Spencer was there, and Jonas Levy, and 
Halliday, and Tegetmeier, and James Lowe, who relieved me of 
some of my arduous duties as chairman. I had to make a great 
many speeches, by one of which I brought down upon me in full 
force irate George Cruikshank, by simply referring to my feelings 
of happiness in my early childhood when I first cast eyes upon his 
illustrations to "Peter Schlemihl." He abused me like a pick- 
pocket, sneeringly insinuating that I was much older then than 
he could ever hope to grow to ! In proposing the toast of the 
evening, "The Savage Club," I grew slightly sentimental, I 
remember. Alluding to the many and evil days of the years of 

* This truly well-graced actor has also left the great world-stage 
since the lines in the text were written. He died at the patriarchal age 
of eighty-five. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 301 

my pilgrimage, I proclaimed my heartfelt gratitude for my con- 
nection with the club, which I attributed to the beneficent 
all-pervading law of compensation. In the very problematic 
event of any possibly surviving friends subscribing for a 
tombstone to be placed over the spot where I might at 
last find rest, I desired this epitaph to be inscribed thereon. 
" Siste, viator! but do not drop the pitying tear; for though he 
who lieth here after life's fitful fever had his full share of afflic- 
tion, he lived and died a MEMBER OF THE SAVAGE CLUB, so the 
sum of his happiness was necessarily greater than the sum of his 
sufferings." Alas ! this consoling flattering unction I can no 
longer lay to my vexed soul. Eepeated absences on the Con- 
tinent, and long-continued intermission of remittances of sub- 
scriptions, have had their baneful effect upon the Old Bohemian's 
membership. Yes, new Pharaohs have arisen who knew not 
Joseph and who know him not.* 

It was Fred Lawrence who made the preliminary arrange- 
ments with Lawson. When the committee of nine proceeded to 
Vinegar Yard to settle finally, there were ten of them if such a 
venerable Irish bull may be permitted to pass muster here for 
the famous wizard of the North, Kob Soy McGregor Anderson, 
was with us though not of us. He attended us as a kind of 
jimicus curicB to facilitate negotiations, as he knew Lawson well. 
Anderson was a curious compound. He was kind-hearted and 
good-natured, and could be most gentlemanly in manners and 
speech ; yet he would occasionally indulge in language that 
would make one's hair stand on end. I knew only one other man 
who could hold his own against him in that rather undesirable 
line the late Edward Tyrrel Smith, then manager of Drury 
Lane Theatre. 

Man is an emulative animal. These two strove in rivalry to 
achieve pre-eminence in Billingsgate, and, strange to relate, 
perhaps, they had a regular contest for the championship and 
for five pounds a side. The match came off in the White Hart 
parlour. James Leander and Jack Lomax, both past masters of 
the craft, were appointed judges. There were present on the 
occasion, besides these two renowned slangers and pyglossists, 
Lawrence, Robert and William Brough, James Kenney, William 
Eoiner, Augustus and Horace Mayhew, Mark Lemon, Alexis 

* I confess, with intensest gratification and gratitude, that I was 
grievously erring in the fact and sentiment stated and expressed here 
in the text. The noble Savages have nobly made me a Life member 
of the glorious Club. So the epitaph may stand ; I only trust it will 
not he required this century, at least. 



302 REHINISCENOES OF 

Soyer, myself, and a few more. Soyer did not stay long; 
Lawrence and Kenney followed very shortly after ; Robert 
and William Brough and myself also speedily took refuge 
outside at the bar, where we were soon joined by the two 
Mayhews, Mark Lemon, and some others. The two "rival 
champions" had been at it barely a full quarter of an hour, 
when they found themselves alone in the room with the 
"judges." Five minutes more, and Jack Lomax came out 
with a rueful face. "JSTo," he said, with a melancholy head- 
shake, " nobody can stand that." Another minute, and James 
Leander rushed from the parlour. " For mercy's sake," he cried 
to the barman, " hand us four of whisky cold, to take the nasty 
taste out of my mouth. Faugh ! I never heard anything like 
this before." So the two rivals had to agree to make it a drawn 
battle. 

Anderson had another strong ambition. The great magician loved 
dearly to shine on the theatrical stage. He thought he alone 
could do justice to Eob Eoy McGregor, in which character he 
appeared at Covent Garden. Now Charles Mathews, objecting 
to the Wizard's poaching on the dramatic domain, resolved to 
apply the argumentum ad Jiominem to the offender. He engaged 
Drury Lane for a series of legerdemain, prestidigitation, and 
prestigiation performances. You see Charley could do almost 
anything he liked to put his mind or his hand to. 

I had the good fortune to be present at the first seance, which 
was truly first-rate, the amateur wizard being every bit as good 
as the professional. Among a variety of tricks, Charles per- 
formed also the umbrella trick that is to say, he did not exactly 
perform it, but stopped short at the suspension of the article in 
mid-air, urgently inviting the attention of the spectators to the 
umbrella, and entreating them not to lose sight of it for a single 
instant. 

Well, throughout the performance every eye was fixed upon 
the blessed umbrella, every one being eager to know what would 
be the upshot of the trick introduced with such solicitude by the 
amateur magician. 

The performance came to an end, however, and Charley was 
on the point of withdrawing with a bow, evidently forgetting 
all about the umbrella trick, when he was reminded of the 
omission by the whole body of spectators uni sono. He 
came back, took down the umbrella, and expressed his " heart- 
felt thanks " to the spectators for their solicitous care of his 
property. " You see, ladies and gentlemen," he said, " I bought 
this umbrella this morning, and paid a guinea for it ; and I know 
by dire experience that theatres are not exactly the most honest 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 303 

places lots of people about, who would not mind walking off 
with a really good article like this," opening and shutting the 
umbrella, and glancing all over it admiringly. " So I took the 
liberty to ask you to look carefully after it for me ; and I have to 
thank you again, ladies and gentlemen, for having done so." 
Another deep bow, and exit Charles Mathews. 



Some years before the establishment of the Savage Club, the 
magician-knight of the North, in conjunction with his doughty 
squire Kingston, gave a grand spread to the Press, in the green- 
room of the Lyceum Theatre. 

The peremptory summons to attend and fail not, under the 
direst penalties, a most truculent document, .was devised by 
George Augustus Sala, and lithographed by Day. It duly bore 
cord and dagger in the seal. 

It was rather more fully and amply responded to, I remember, 
than was quite comfortable to those who attended. There was 
room for about thirty in the green-room to sit down to supper, 
whilst some hundred and fifty or sixty came to the spread. 

I came with John and George Bridgeman and Holt. We 
were rather late, and found the green-room fully occupied. How- 
ever, we levied heavy toll upon the cold fowl and the wine within 
our reach, and we planted ourselves in a snug corner, ready and 
eke willing to do battle to the death against any audacious 
pirate who should feel disposed to pounce down upon our gallant 
galley, freighted with four roast chickens, and ample supply of 
bread, and seven bottles of various sorts of wine, also two knives, 
one fork, two glasses, a salt-cellar, and two plates, a sound one 
and a cracked one. 

I am sadly afraid many of the invited guests had to go short 
of supplies. I know we had to take compassion upon Charles 
Lamb Kenney, who was desolately roaming about in search of 
sustenance. 

Somehow this created an uncomfortable feeling ; and though 
fresh relays of supplies were procured in the course of the evening 
and early night, through the humane exertions of B. P. Kingston, 
there was bitter discontent, which culminated at last in open 
defiance of the summons to leave, many of the invited guests 
declaring their determination not to go home till daylight. The 
fire-engine had to be called in at last to play upon the recalci- 
trants. I remember I had to take Edwin Boberts away by main 
force, and he, generally a mild fellow, and a very good friend 
of mine, went about the remainder of the night thirsting for my 
blood. 



304 REMINISCENCES OF 

Edward P. Hingston was one of the best of men, with a soul 
attuned to poetry and high thought. He was a passionate admirer 
of Longfellow. He was Anderson's acting manager and factotum 
at the Lyceum, where he had a small room near the roof, which 
he dubbed " the treasury." One day Hingston got me up there, 
and cornered me safely, beyond the power of giving him the slip. 
He then drew from his pocket his pet poet's then latest produc- 
tion, the " Song of Hiawatha," and read it to me from the first 
line to the last ! The good fellow really thought he was giving 
me a great treat; whilst he was simply making me feel most 
uncomfortable, and at last almost angry with him. I tried 
every dodge to make him stop. I even told him I was 
sure the Lyceum was on fire. It was all in vain ; he would not 
budge an inch, until the " Song of Hiawatha" was sung to the 
last line, when he asked me, with tears in his eyes and emotional 
sobs in his voice, what I thought of that for a poem. Well, he 
was such a sterling good fellow that I hypocritically expressed 
my delight to him, and my "sincerest " thanks for having given 
me " such a treat ! " But I mentally resolved that he should 
never corner me again, though we both should live to the age of 
Methuselah. From that time I hated the very sound of the 
names Hiawatha, Minnehaha, and the rest of them, and even took 
an unreasoning dislike to poor Longfellow. 

Another reminiscence of the Lyceum. When Falconer, with 
Chatterton for his acting manager, opened the theatre with 
" Woman ; or, Love against the World," matters wore a most de- 
pressing aspect. At half-past four in the afternoon of the opening 
night, the indispensable " drawing-room " furniture for one of the 
most important scenes had not yet been procured. It could 
not be hired, as Mr. Arnold, the proprietor, made it an invariable 
rule never to allow a single article once brought into the house to 
be taken out again; and there was no money to purchase what 
was required, nor tick to be obtained. At last Chatterton managed 
to get part of the indispensable furniture upon his own personal 
guarantee, and a piece of cheap chintz was bought to cover half- 
a-dozen or so rickety old chairs, so as to make them presentable. 
Yet this piece was the beginning of a prosperous season. " Peep 
o' Day," which succeeded it, was still vastly more succesoful, 
landing the lucky manager safe, with some twelve thousand 
pounds * on the right side of the ledger ; which he incontinently 
set about throwing into the insatiable maw of Drury Lane, that 

* I have reason to believe that the net profits amounted to over 
sixteen thousand pounds, which were divided between Falconer and 
Chatterton, two thirds to the former, one third to the latter. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 305 

has ground to very small dust the substance of many managers, 
and is, unhappily, likely to make many more victims. 

When " Bonnie Dundee " had turned out a gigantic failure, 
and " Manfred," which Chatterton, who always knew ten times 
as much about the proper management of a theatre as Falconer 
ever did, had insisted upon producing in lieu of Falconer's 
desperate Irish attempts, just kept the house open, a splendid 
speculative thought suggested itself to Chatterton, and was 
eagerly caught up by Falconer, and, if I mistake not, by a 
gentleman of great wealth, willing to advance the necessary 
funds to carry the conception into execution. It was simply to 
secure the services of Mrs. Yelverton to perform the part of the 
heroine in " Woman ; or, Love against the World." I was chosen 
to conduct the negotiation with the lady. A brilliant offer was 
made to her through me. She was to enter into an engagement 
for five years to perform in that one character in Great Britain 
and Ireland, and in America and Australia, in consideration of a 
" screw " of two thousand pounds sterling a year, fully secured to 
her. 

I believe she would gladly have accepted the tempting offer 
but for her sister's opposition and Mr. Whiteside's adverse advice. 
She had also at the time just entered into an engagement with 
Cassell, Fetter, and Galpin, to write for GaaseWs Magazine, and 
she had a strong inner conviction that she possessed a pretty 
talent for literary composition. Still, I am sure I should have 
brought matters to a satisfactory conclusion had I but been left 
to manage them in my own way. Unluckily, the principals got 
impatient, and essayed to force the lady's will. The result was a 
final break-off of the negotiation. 

I have reason to believe that the lady was very, very sorry 
afterwards. It was a sad pity for all parties that foolish pride 
and spurious sentiment were permitted to wreck one of the 
most safely-promising speculations. It was no fault of mine or 
of Chatterton's, who in fact did everything in his power to guard 
Falconer's truest interests throughout his connection with him 
both at the Lyceum and at Drury Lane. 

I have known Chatterton many years, and I have found him 
throughout a sterling man and an excellent friend. In 1868 he 
brought out a small farce of mine at Drury Lane, and bought it 
of me after it had run its time. So it could not have been so 
very, very bad. At least, I can conscientiously aver that it was 
an improvement upon my first juvenile effort of " One Kiss, 
Three Kicks," and upon an ambitious attempt to shine in 
light French comedy which I perpetrated some forty odd 

X 



306 REMINISCENCES OF 

years ago at Besancon, under the equally ambitious title- 
of " Raquettes et Volants." I wrote it for a company of 
amateurs young students. It was intended to introduce my 
lectures on French literature to an appreciative public. I am 
sorry to say it did not draw much. The performers, you see, 
were not quite up to the mark : they, of course, imputed the 
fault to the piece and its author ; but that was only their spite,. 
born of their disappointment. Be this as it may, I have at all 
events much improved since, and I only wish an intelligent and 
enterprising manager would try my comedy of " An Appalling 
Appetite," or my screaming farce of "Three Noses." Verbum* 
sap. 

Another reminiscence of the Lyceum. 

The great Northern Wizard's most courteous and obliging- 
manager, Edward P. Kingston, took a benefit. A number of 
professionals and amateurs, of a variety of talents, gave him 
their generous and zealous assistance, among others, George 
Augustus Sala, Morris Barnett, Harry Boleno, and Leigh Murray. 
The latter excellent actor, but wondrously weak vessel in the- 
way of soberness, or rather the lack of it, fell a victim to tempta- 
tion in the afternoon of the day of the benefit performance. So- 
we thought it the wiser course to send him home, and inform 
Kingston of the contretemps. In response to loud calls for 
Leigh Murray and Kingston, the latter came forward with a 
neat set speech. " Ladies and gentlemen," he said, " I am Mr. 
Kingston. I beg to assure you that Mr. Murray is not in the 
theatre." Here he was interrupted by shouts of laughter. For, 
behold ! there was Leigh, who had given us the slip, hanging 
out of one of the boxes in the attitude of Punchinello, one 
of his favourite characters, smiling inanely upon the audience I 
Kingston was full of the sweetest milk of human kindness. I 
believe he could have given odds even to B. L. Blanchard ; but I am 
afraid on that inauspicious occasion some of it turned considerably 
sour. 

One last reminiscence of the Lyceum. It was in March, 1860, 
that the Savage Club gave its great performance there of 
Sheridan's " School for Scandal," followed by an entirely new 
version of " Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves," the joint produc- 
tion of Planchq, Byron, Leicester Buckingham, Frank Talfourd, 
William and Kobert Brough, and, in some trifling measure at 
least, Fred Lawrence. Her Majesty and the late Prince Consort, 
and other members of the Royal family, honoured the amateur 
attempt with their presence. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 307 

Dear old Planch^, whom everybody knew, and whom every 
one loved that knew him ! he is now gone to his long rest, after 
a long, laborious, and useful life, full of years and honour. 

It was shortly before this well-graced actor left this earthly 
stage that I met him for the last time at Tinsley's. He liked 
William Tinsley, and was always delighed to pass an hour or so 
in his society, to discuss theatricals with him. On this occasion 
he came from Burlington House, where he had been to see the 
pictures of the Academic exhibition. He was in right good 
humour and in rare trim of his fanciful brilliancy of mind. " I 
handed my stick to the keeper," he told us; "and giving me a 
deposit voucher he said something about ninety-eight to me. 
' No, my friend, you are out in your reckoning there, by many 
years, let me assure you/ I replied to him. ' Ninety-eight, 
indeed ! Had you said eighty-two, you would have been nearer 
the mark.' Well, the man looked at me completely flabbergasted, 
and actually begged my pardon, mumbling something about that 
it was not me he meant, but my stick." 

Among the performers in the comedy were three brothers 
Brough Eobert, William, and John Frank Talfourd, Halliday, 
Sidney French, Draper, Crawford Wilson, Byron, Deffet Francis, 
Furtado, and my humble self; Lionel Brough, Hollingshead, 
Tegetmeier, William M'Connell, Charles Bennett, Julian Portch, 
and a host of other members of the club played in the burlesque : 
so did Albert Smith, who played on the piano, and was gratefully 
presented by William Brough, in the name of the Forty Thieves, 
with a piece of plate, of the original willow pattern. This some- 
what disconcerted poor Albert, who looked upon it as a very bad 
joke, and was correspondingly wroth in our dressing-room after. 

Crawford Wilson and Henry J. Byron respectively played the 
parts of Joseph and Charles Surface. As the former spoke with 
a slight Irish accent, which some people given to exaggeration 
called a brogue, the Entr'acte speculated upon how it had come 
to pass that one of the brothers had been brought up at Cork, 
the other in Cockayne. 

The performance was for the benefit of the widows of Bayle 
St. John and Dr. Gustavus Frank, two members of the club, 
then recently deceased. 

Dr. Gustavus Frank was one of the chief actors in the 
Vienna rising of 1848. In the defence of the city against Win- 
dischgratz he was aide-de-camp to the ill-fated Messenhauser 
and to Bern. Dr. Frank was one of the most accomplished men 
I have ever met with in my rather long career. The younger 

x 2 



308 REMINISCENCES OF 

son of a wealthy Yienna banker, lie had received the highest 
university education then attainable in Austria. He was Doctor 
of Laws of the University of Padua. His linguistic accomplish- 
ments were many and various. Strange to say, he would never 
take kindly to English, though he passed the last nine years of 
his life in London, and could manage English literary composition 
pretty well. He had been an officer in the Austrian army, in which 
his elder brother rose to the very highest grade but one ; but his 
liberal aspirations had soon driven him from the military service. 
He was a prolific dramatic author, with an unlucky foible for 
theatrical management. He had been engaged in several large 
stage speculations, I believe, which had turned out the reverse of 
successf nl. He was a great artist in colours, and painted extremely 
well ; so well, indeed, that the late Mr. Bichardson, of the "West- 
minster Eoad, would occasionally lend twenty to twenty-five 
pounds upon certain choice productions of his pencil. A friend 
and pupil of Bosco's, he had acquired a rare proficiency in leger- 
demain, which he would occasionally exhibit for the delectation 
of a circle of intimate friends. Public exhibitions of his truly 
astonishing talent in this line he peremptorily declined, though 
very acceptable pecuniary offers were made him. I know that 
Anderson once actually proposed a partnership to the doctor; 
and it would have been the best spec he ever made in his life 
only that Frank could not be prevailed upon to appear in public 
as a prestidigitator. I had once seen Bosco perform a marvellous 
card-trick at the Cafe de la Perle, in Lyons. The great magician 
was playing piquet with a young gentleman, who after a time 
complained that he never by any chance got an ace in his hand 
when Bosco was dealing. " You shall have no reason to com- 
plain again of lack of aces in your hand," said the Chevalier, 
dealing out the cards. As the youth took up the first four cards, 
his face brightened considerably ; but as he proceeded, it assumed 
a look of blank amazement : the Chevalier had dealt him three 
complete sets of aces. I told this to Frank one day. Well, on 
that very night he quietly did the same trick at William Brough's, 
, and he repeated it several times without any of us being able to 
detect the exchange of the packs of cards, although we watched 
him most narrowly. 

In conjunction with William Brough, he wrote a comedy, "A 
Tale of a Coat," which was brought out at the Haymarket ; and 
a farce, " More Kicks than Halfpence," which had a short run on 
the boards of the Lyceum. He had no luck, poor fellow ! whilst 
his brother, rising from grade to grade up to field-marshal- 
lieutenant, was ultimately made Minister of War in the ever- 
memorable year 1866, when he organized, jointly with Benedek, 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 309 

the disastrous campaign which ended in the utter overthrow of 
Austria and her German allies. The Austrian Government had 
treated the younger brother very indifferently at least ; and had 
Windischgratz but been able to catch him, he would have had 
him shot without mercy, the same as poor Messenhauser and 
other patriots. Those who believe in a Nemesis of history, and 
are maliciously given, might be tempted to speculate upon the 
disastrous results brought years after upon the said Government, 
partly, at least, through the involuntary agency of this so much- 
favoured elder brother. 

Dr. Frank painted exquisitely on ivory and porcelain. For 
years he subsisted entirely upon the productions of his brush 
and pencil. He was long in the employment of the London 
Stereoscopic Company, to retouch and finish portraits, etc. He 
also painted dozens upon dozens of quaint German landscapes, 
with village clocks and clockwork unhappily at a wretchedly 
low remuneration. 

Dr. Frank was one of the original founders of the Savage 
Club. 

Dr. Karl Tausenau was a more important leader still in the 
great Vienna rising of 1848, which, had it had full success in con- 
junction with the Hungarian insurrection, would have changed 
the face of Europe and saved the world rivers of blood and 
horrors unspeakable. 

Tausenau was a born orator, with a surprising power of swaying 
the masses, and even forcing assent, however reluctantly given, 
from men of the highest order of intellect. He was an accom- 
plished linguist, one of the best and soundest classical scholars 
of our time, no mean Orientalist, and a fluent, accentless speaker 
of seven European languages German, Czech, Italian, French, 
English, Magyar, and Dutch, to wit. Cardinal Mezzofant alone 
might excel him in his truly marvellous linguistic acquire- 
ments. Strange to say, he was but an indifferent writer. He, 
the man who for three days running kept the Hungarian Diet at 
Presburg enthralled under the spell of his eloquence in Magyar, 
and upon whom the Hungarians bestowed the name of the German 
Kossuth, could not draw up a terse and concise proclamation. 
English he spoke with rare fluency. At a great international 
meeting held in London in 1851, he interpreted to the English 
section, currente lingud (if the expression may pass), the speeches 
made in five different languages a feat which I never heard 
achieved before nor since. 

Tausenau was a profound historian, a really good rational 
physician, and an accomplished cook. Barring the epithets, there 



310 REMINISCENCES OF 

was thus a threefold bond of union between us, and we were 
indeed fast friends. Every great man has his foibles. Tausenau 
was no exception to the rule. This man of such immense brain- 
power worshipped his stomach. A Lucullus and an Apicius 
rolled into one could barely have given an adequate notion of his 
intense gastrolatry. His enemies would even dub him " Vitellius 
redivivus." This was a vile calumny, however, for Tausenau 
certainly had nothing whatever of that disgusting beast about 
him. No matter, Karl Tausenau is years since gone to the 
mysteries beyond, where we may hope to find the grosser part 
of our poor humanity stripped off, and whither all of us will have 
to journey, sooner or later ay, very considerably sooner if 
Mr. Proctor is right in his lugubrious vaticinations.* 

Another dear intimate of mine in the olden days had also 
been an actor in the diastrous Vienna drama of 1848 nay, a most 
important leader in that sad affair, if you took his own word for 
it Karl Formes to wit, the famous basso profundo, the most 
extensive and persistent romancer it has ever been my good or 
evil fortune in life to meet with barring perhaps James Kenney, 
or rather I might say these two were absolute parallels in this 
high line of imaginative art, very gemini of transcendent 
fiction ! 

Karl was one of four brothers, all of them gifted with magni- 
ficent voices. Their father was precentor of Miilheim, a suburb 
of Cologne. Karl passed his obligatory military service in the 
Prussian artillery. The officers of his corps were in the habit of 
indulging in private theatricals. They discovered that young 
Formes possessed a powerful natural organ, and had great his- 
trionic talent. After his time of service was over, they persuaded 
him to take to the lyrical stage for a living. He soon made his 
way. On the occasion of StaudigFs illness, the young bass 
singer, then in Vienna, was invited to sing the part of that 
greatest of popular favourites. Despite his rather imperfect 
musical training, his splendid natural voice and his marvel- 
lous adaptability to circumstances and exigencies carried him 
triumphantly through this most severe ordeal. His fortune was 
made. With the stamp of the Vienna cognoscenti upon him, he 
might command the highest terms in every capital of Europe. 

He happened to be at Vienna in the hot days of 1848, and 
he took part in the rising. He used to tell us his remini- 
scences of the stormy events of that feverish time. One evening 

* I have heard since that the great astronomer has been grievously 
misunderstood, and that he, on the contrary, handsomely gives our globe 
" millions of years " to live which is tidings of comfort and joy ! 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 311 

*n admiring circle of friends sat gathered around him at the 
Caf6 National, in Cranbourne Street, Leicester Square, which 
was then kept by a worthy German of the name of Kiiper. 
Frank, Tausenau, Gotze, and myself, were of the number. In 
the excitement of his narrative, his romancing disposition carried 
him rapidly through the several grades from lieutenant to 
colonel in the course of a single afternoon, when he had per- 
formed marvels of personal valour ; among other wondrous feats 
and deeds, fearlessly crossing no less than six distinct times a 
road swept by a very hailstorm of the largest cannon balls, to 
carry messages from Messenhauser to Bern, and back again. He 
had the inconceivable audacity to tell us this in presence of 
Frank, who had been on the spot at the time, as aide-de-camp to 
Messenhauser. Nay, he appealed to Frank in support of his 
statement, well knowing, of course, that that gentle-minded man 
would not hurt his feelings by a direct contradiction. Frank 
simply smiled, and made a wondrous face at me, in which amaze- 
ment was blended with amusement. But Tausenau pulled Formes 
up short, as soon as he had advanced to full colonel. " Nay, 
Karl," he said, " stop here, or we may have you field-marshal- 
general ere we separate for the night." 

He used to tell us marvellous tales of his intimacy with 
Emperors and Kings and Grand Dukes, and for the matter of 
that, Grand Duchesses and Princesses of every grade and variety. 

In illustration of the fearful system of police spying and 
-delation and tyranny holding supreme sway in Russia under the 
Czar Nicholas, he told us how the Grand Duchess Maria, wife of 
Maximilian of Leuchtenberg, had tearfully entreated him to be 
most circumspect in his sayings and doings, and above all things 
cautious in his relations with the Court, so that he might avoid 
giving Orloff, the then Chief of the High Police of the Empire, 
cause for suspicion and jealousy ( ! ), as even her father, the Czar 
himself, would be powerless to protect him against Orlofi ! Nay, 
>the almighty Nicholas had never ventured to talk d cceur ouvert 
to him, until he had made quite sure that Orloff was not near, or 
any of his spies ! 

With King Frederick William IV. of Prussia Formes was on 
the most intimate terms. That monarch would familiarly call 
him " Karl," and treat him profusely to the then famous widow 
of Rheims, out of his own most private cellar. "Karl," his 
Majesty would exclaim, on such occasions (I suppose, if true, it 
must have been after the third or fourth bottle) " Karl, I am 
not happy. This trade of royalty overtaxes my strength. How 
willingly would I give up my crown and sceptre to be thou ! ' 
And then the mighty ruler over so many millions would weep on 



312 REMINISCENCES OF 

the loyal bosom of his faithful bass singer. It was as good as a 
play to hear Formes in these fancy pictures. 

The Prince of Prussia also, the present Emperor of Germany, 
was passionately fond of Formes according to the latter' s own 
statement, of course. Only his liking was not so much of the 
artist as of the artillerist. " Formes," his royal highness would say 
to him lie never took the familiar liberty of calling him Karl 
" Formes, I admit I admire you as a singer ; but I liked you still 
better as a bombardier. Why the deuce must you leave the army? 
I would have taken care of your rapid advancement." 

Poor Karl ! the pet of Kings and Emperors. He came down 
again to obscure German music-halls. He also is long since gone 
to where there is no rank or station, no story- telling. 

I have mentioned the name of James Kenney in connection with 
the great Karl's gift of romancing. James Kenney was a very 
dear friend of mine. He had in his composition all the elements 
of the making of a distinguished character. He was an excellent 
linguist ; he knew Spanish and French very well indeed. He 
was an accomplished draughtsman, and possessed artistic talent 
of no mean order. Had he taken to the drama, I am sure he 
would have been universally acknowledged as the worthy son 
and successor of the author of " Sweethearts and Wives." In any 
other branch of literature he might have been the equal, at least, 
of his own talented brother, Charles Lamb Kenney, lately deceased. 

Nature had gifted James Kenney with a prodigiously inventive 
memory and the most wonderful constructive power of imagina- 
tion. The stories he used to tell would make one's hair stand right 
on end with amaze and admiration, there was such wealth of detail 
about them; and I never knew him at a loss to meet and 
victoriously overcome sceptic objections. 

I once heard him tell poor Edmund Falconer then in the full 
glow and sunshine of "Peep o' Day" a wondrous tale of a 
marvellous parrot, once owned by his (Kenney's) father, and 
sharing with a mischievous monkey the affection of that tender- 
hearted Cowperean. Master Monkey, the tale ran, being jealously 
inclined, took a dislike to poor Poll, and meditated mischief 
against her. He had frequently watched the cook pluming fowls ; 
so one fine day in winter the vile wretch took advantage of being 
left alone with Poll, seized upon the unhappy bird, and stripped 
it of every feather. When Mr. Kenney, senior, walked acci- 
dentally in, he found the ruffian ape in a state of intensest 
delight, chattering madly away at the shrieking parrot, which was 
just on the point of expiring, plaintively uttering, " Brr ! Brr !. 
how very cold to be sure ! " 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 313 

This was rather too strong a dose for Falconer to swallow- 
without demur, so he told Kenney point-blank that he did nob 
believe a word of it. "How," he asked triumphantly, in the 
course of his argument in refutation, " how was it possible for an 
animal, having merely instinct to guide it, to give such convinc- 
ing proof of the possession of ratiocinative powers as this would 
imply?" 

James listened indulgently to Falconer's acute remarks, then- 
he replied, with a smile of conscious superiority : "Ah, Falconer, 
you think you have knocked me out of time. It is mostly the- 
way with people to darken counsel by words without under- 
standing. Parrots, you say, speak by imitation alone, from a 
dim mechanical sound-recollection. Who tells you that this 
was not so with Poll? Why, the poor parrot was nearly always 
present when my father took his cold morning bath, which in- 
winter time generally made him shiver, and exclaim in the very 
same words used by the ill-fated bird in its agony, ' Brr ! Brr ! 
how very cold to be sure ! ' Most likely, Falconer, you never 
heard the veracious story of the famous raven of Covent Garden 
Market ? Well, I'll tell it to you. This raven had pervaded the 
place for years, and had picked up a great many odds and ends 
and snatches of the market-people's talk. One day Master Raven 
sat on his favourite roof, when a mischievous urchin threw a 
heavy stone up at it, which hit the unlucky bird fatally. It 
tumbled down from the roo to the pavement. In its dying 
agony it feebly croaked, ' Broke my back, by G d ! ' Now to a 
verity the poor raven had broken its back; yet was there no 
process of ratiocination in its dying declaration. It was simply a 
dim mechanical sound-reminiscence of what it had so often heard 
market-porters exclaim under exceptionally heavy burdens." 

The great Edmund, whether convinced or not by this brilliant 
demonstration, was silenced at least, and went on his way- 
pondering. 

And to hear James tell these stories in a thoroughly French 
manner, with a semi-Gallic accent, and interspersing his talk 
with periodical small lip-explosions, was a rich treat indeed. 

James Kenney had a curious knack of imagining slices of luck 
to have come to him unexpectedly; and being truly a good,, 
generous fellow, he would often strive to make his friends sharers- 
in his good fortune in imagination. I remember how liberally he 
on one occasion bestowed fifty pounds upon me in this fashion. He- 
had introduced mo to a near relative of his who wanted a com- 
petent translator for a certain technical work. Well, I did the- 
work, but I found the expected and stipulated reward of merit 
wondrously backward in coming forth. For a time I entertained 



'314 REMINISCENCES OF 

the insane idea that persevering applications would in the end 
succeed in obtaining at least partial payment ; but I found it no 
go. Still, great are the pleasures of hope ; so I persevered for a 
time. Once, on my way on a dunning expedition to my debtor, I 
met James Kenney, who looked wondrously cheerful. He asked 
me not to trouble about those paltry eighteen pounds which his 
relative owed me, but to come along with him, and listen to what 
he had to tell me. 

Years before, he said, when a good thumping legacy had un- 
expectedly come to him, he had lent a friend four hundred pounds . 
The said friend had betaken himself suddenly to the Australian 
colonies, and he had not heard of him or his money until this 
very morning, when he had received a letter from a solicitor in 
Lincoln's Inn-Fields. " Here is the letter," he said, putting his 
hand to his breast-pocket. The letter was not there, however, 
as he had inadvertently left it in his other coat. But what of that ? 
He had a careless habit of leaving his vouchers at home. The 
letter was to inform him that Mr. Jerningham James was always 
particular in names, which he kept in unerring remembrance 
had made a large fortune in Australia, and had instructed his 
solicitor to pay Mr. Kenney six hundred pounds four hundred 
loan, and two hundred interest gratefully added. Next morning, 
at ten, James was to touch the cash, of which he promised me 
there and then a free gift of fifty pounds. At this juncture Bill 
Bomer came up, who was at once made a sharer in the good news, 
with a generous promise of a donation of twenty pounds. Well, 
we went on our way rejoicing. Next morning James was not to 
be seen, which made me at once, in vulgar parlance, smell a rat. 
But poor Bill, who was of a more trusting nature, and wanted the 
money still worse than I did, danced attendance for four days in 
many places where Kenney might be expected to turn up. Then 
he, too, gave it up as a hopeless job, swearing that James Kenney 
was the biggest liar in existence. Yet he admitted afterwards, 
when his ire had cooled down a little, that the mere hope of 
handling twenty pounds was a pleasurable sensation, and that 
four days of it was worth something. 

James Kenney used to tell an amusing story of Staudigl, 
whether true or invented I will not venture to decide. The 
management of Drury Lane, he said, had asked him to teach 
Staudigl the correct pronunciation of the following short sentence 
in English : " Pull up the drawbridge, and let no one pass, on 
peril of your lives ! " After several hours' hard work he had suc- 
ceeded in making his great pupil perfect in this brief sentence, in 
sound and accent, an achievement upon which he felt disposed to 
pride himself hugely. Judge of his disgust then, when on the 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 315 

night of the public performance he heard the great German singer 
declaim : " Bull up de trawpritch, and led no wone bass, on berill 
ov your lifes ! " It was hard lines indeed. 

James's brother, Charles Lamb Kenney, was also what the 
Yankees call a " notable " man. The mantle of his godfather 
Elia had at least partly fallen on his shoulders. He was a sound 
classical scholar, who, however, as a rule, avoided all loud display 
of his ancient-tongues lore. Still he would come out pretty 
strongly on occasion. 

James Hannay was in the slightly objectionable habit of 
parading classic quotations by the score before the club, in and 
out of season, and without the least regard to the feelings of the 
non-classic members. He would also delight in professing what 
one of our set, as good a classic as Hannay, used to characterise 
as an " intrusive familiarity " with the old writers. He would 
talk of poor Homer as the " heptapolitan blind singer ; " Virgil 
was dubbed by him the sweet Mantuan swan ; Aristophanes was 
the great lasher of follies and foibles, equally at home in the 
clouds and in the marshes. Some were called " past masters in 
oratory," others "princes of epigram." Horace was the "dear 
old fellow," the filius aalarii* who imported more than his 
father's salt into his wondrous productions ; and so forth. 

Now Robert Brough, among others, disliked being "bom- 
barded " out of the place, as he expressed it, by having all these 
ancient " bricks" thrown at his head. One day he complained of 
this to Charles Kenney who consolingly bade him be of good 
cheer, as he (Charles) would try to cure Hannay of this annoying 
habit. 

Like all habitual citers, Hannay had a number of pet quota- 
tions, all cut and dried, and ready for use on every and any 
occasion, suitable or otherwise. Now most of these quotations 
were limited in extent. Charles Kenney studied the entire code 
carefully, then set diligently about learning by heart the passages 
immediately preceding and immediately following the quotation 
as dished up by our great Scotch scholar. So soon as he believed 
himself firm in the saddle on this field, he went in for tackling 
poor Hannay, by requesting him to go on with the quotation, or 
to give the part preceding it, obligingly furnishing him with the 
cue. Now there are some walking classics who can do this sort 
of thing easily enough, only Hannay was not one of these. His 
remembrance of the heads and tails of his favourite quota- 
tions broke down, the result of which was that he became very 

* In Suetonius' life of Horace the poet's father is said to have been 
salsamentarius, which is the same as salarius. 



316 REMINISCENCES OF 

much more chary of them, and would not readily venture upon 
any in the dread presence of the formidable Charley. One night, 
however, when he had an aggravated fit of classicity upon him, 
he assailed Robert Brough with a number of learned quotations,, 
whereupon Eobert exclaimed, in comic despair to his brother, 
" Oh, brother William, look out, look out ; see whether you cannot 
spy Charles Kenney coming this way ! " 

James Hannay had the ancient lineage and genteel descent 
foible very strongly developed in him, and he dearly loved to 
parade before his humble Bohemian friends and companions his 
familiarity with the great of the land. He was on intimate terms, 
or nearly so, with a baker's dozen of dukes and marquises, a good 
round score of earls and viscounts, and the smaller fry of barons 
and baronets by the hundred. 

Robert Brough used to make rare fun of this over-anxious 
self-assertion. One day, when Hannay was boasting more suo of 
his grand acquaintances in the ranks of the British nobility, 
Eobert heaved a deep, long-drawn sigh. We all looked at him, 
rather surprised. " What is the matter with you, Bob ? " asked 
Hannay. "Ah," replied Brough, with a melancholy shake of 
his head, " ah, Jamie, your talk reminds me of a lord whom I 
once knew ; but he is dead now, poor fellow, peace be to his 
manes ! " For that night Hannay dropped Burke and Debrett. 

On another occasion Hannay came in full of the reminiscence 
of a splendid dinner which he had eaten the day before at a grand 
mansion, but which seemed to have fallen short of his standard 
by a curious omission. " Strange," he said, by way of introduc- 
tion, " how manners and customs ivill change. I thought I should 
never live to see the day when the royal salmon and the lordly turbofc 
would cease to be indispensable dishes on a well-appointed table. 
Now what do you think of this ? I dined yesterday at the Earl 

of F 's, and there was positively no fish." "What! No 

fish ? " exclaimed Robert Brough, with well-acted assumption of 
surprise bordering on horror. " No fish ! well, that is strange." 
Then, brightening up, as if he had suddenly lighted upon the 
true and natural explanation of this curious social phenomenon, 
he added, with innocent naivete, " Oh, I see, Hannay ; they had 
eaten it all upstairs." It was some time before poor Hannay 
ventured again upon fishy talk in the club-room.* 

Hannay professed the deepest detestation of trade and traders. 

* " That tale of yours is fishy, old man," says a friend to me ; " it 
has been told of others long before." It may be so. I can only 
conscientiously aver that I truly believe even now in the absolute- 
correctness of my reminiscence as narrated in the text above, which 
I therefore decline to delete. Let it be taken pro tanto. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 317 

This foible of his was so generally known, that dear little Jeff 
Prowse, in his charming letter from Nice, placed it among tho 
most outrageously absurd items of news which he professed to 
have received from London, that " Hannay has gone into trade." 

In the early days of the Savage Club, when that now full- 
grown noble institution was still in its first cradle, in the Crown 
Tavern, Vinegar Yard, I was walking in one afternoon "pro- 
miscuous," as Mrs. Arthur Brown used to have it, when I heard 
a gentleman at the bar ask Lawson for Robert Brough's private 
address. Boniface, spying my advent, referred the inquirer to 
me, with a wave of his hand in my direction. Robert Brough 
had often described to me Hannay's appearance and manners ; so 
when the gentleman turned to me I knew him at once. As a 
very general rule, I do not dress upon the " four suits a year " 
principle ; I love to be on intimate terms with the coverings of 
my outer man, which it is difficult to achieve under at least a 
couple of years' close acquaintance. Now, it seemed to me that 
the gentleman whom I took to be Mr. Hannay was somehow try- 
ing to look me down ; so I thought I would be even with him. 
" Will you give me Mr. Kobert Brough's private address ? " he 
asked me, with a somewhat lordly air. " We are not in the habit 
of giving the private addresses of members of this club to their 
tradespeople," I replied haughtily. " Tradespeople ! " he ex- 
claimed indignantly " tradespeople indeed ! My name is Hannay, 
sir James Hannay, sir and Robert Brough is a most intimate 
friend of mine." "Ah! Mr. Hannay," I ejaculated, with well- 
acted rapture, " I am truly delighted to make the acquaintance of 
the talented author of ' Singleton Fontenoy.' You, whom I have 
been taught by Bob to regard as a true Bohemian, will, I am sure, 
excuse my blunder. You see, all of us do not wear the 'war- 
ranted of gentle birth ' impressed upon our brows." James looked 
dubious, but he clearly thought it better to let matters rest there. 
In the course of the same afternoon we became intimate friends 
so intimate, indeed, that he deemed me worthy of a number of 
introductions to the Mantuan swan, the filius salarii, and notably, 
on this occasion, to the great " Stagirite Peripatetic." * I, as 
deeming myself in common gratitude bound, treated him in 
return to some quotations from Kant and Hegel, which I am 

* I will not be positive though, whether he quoted him in Greek. 
My recollection rather tends the other way, the r^ore so as I may 
honestly avow that if. I have but little Latin, I have still less Greek. 
And I have it upon my friend Draper's authority, that John Bridge man 
once sold Hannay, in making him believe the Frog Chorus in Aristophanes' 
comedy formed the true foundation of the Greek tongue. 



318 REMINISCENCES OF 

afraid he did not catch sufficiently to appreciate at their just 
value. 

In poor dear Jeff Prowse's humorous letter from Nice it is 
prominently mentioned that " we " of the club " gave a banquet 
to the whole press of Europe and America " in 1862, the year of 
the second London Exhibition. 

It was a grand affair, this banquet, and an immense success. 
It was given at St. James's Hall. W. Donald, the then proprietor 
of the establishment, truly excelled himself which was sayingp 
immensely much of him in those days. He placed a bill of fare 
before us such as has hardly ever been equalled, with a profusion of 
the most generous wines, and at an absurdly low charge sixteen 
shillings per head, I think. 

We felt proudly conscious that the concentrated eye of the 
whole civilised world was upon us ; and we noble Savages, at 
least, with the severe stoicism of our savage nature, kept within 
the bounds of the strictest moderation in every way all of 
us but one one sad exception my dear old friend George 
Cruikshank, who got so excited upon green-tea potations, and 
the bewildering polyglot speeches he had to listen to, that he 
positively took to saltatory exercises. When, in reply to a 
question addressed to me anent G. 0. by Villemessant, I told that 
noble Figarist that this was the indisputable chief, the facile 
princeps of total abstainers in Great Britain, he gave me a shrug 
and a wink of his left eye. His dissent could not have been 
more eloquently and emphatically expressed, even had he tipped 
me the Freemasons' sign. 

It was on our way home in the morning that the little affair 
alluded to in Jeff's letter occurred. It was the dear fellow who 
brought ifc on, by addressing an evidently dyspeptically -given 
guardian of the peace by the pet name of the great Minister who 
had called him and his likes into existence. " Can you give us a 
light, Bobby P " said Jeff. Sine ira ! 

In due time the case was ignominiously kicked out of the 
Marlborough Street Police Court by Mr. Tyrwhitt, despite an 
unconscionable amount of hard swearing on the part of the 
police. 

The great "International literary, artistic, and political 
banquet " took place on June 14, 1862. 

A few days before the momentous event a number of Savages 
were gathered in the club-room, in the Lyceum Tavern, Strand. 
It was a very hot day. Upon the motion of Edward Draper, 
seconded by Andrew Halliday, it was unanimously resolved to 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 

have a feast of cold viands, flanked by a huge cucumber salad. 
Draper, W. Homer, Tom Robertson, Harry Angel, and myself 
proceeded to Covent Garden, where we laid in a dozen or so of 
large cucumbers, a sufficient supply of onions, tarragon and 
chervil, vinegar, and best Lucca oil. Upon our return to the club 
we had dishes, knives, spoons, forks, bowls, plates, and tureens 
brought up, took off our coats, tucked up our shirt-sleeves, and 
set to work with a will, peeling and slicing cucumbers, cutting 
onions, and preparing otherwise for the great Bohemian feast. 

Au beau milieu which means in the very midst of our labour 
of love William, the old waiter, suddenly made his appearance 
in the open door, in a state of absolute flabbergastedness, ushering 
in a " Foreign Press Deputation," who followed close on his heels, 
and who were down upon us before we could say, "Jack 
Robinson." Figaro Villemessant was at the head of the said 
deputation, who were all of them rigged out in full fig, dis- 
playing extensive gold watch-chains, gemmous studs, and dia- 
mond sleeve-links. And we well, we were in full undress 
the worst of the matter or, perhaps, the best of it being that,. 
having our sleeves tucked up, our diamond links were neces- 
sarily out of sight. So you see, upon the principle of De non 
apparentibua et de non exiatentibus eadem est ratio, our distin- 
guished foreign visitors might have believed we had got no 
diamond sleeve-links to show. 

Tableau. 

I really cannot say which of the two parties felt the more 
disconcerted. I have a notion, however, that the visitors did. 
The first half-moment of stunned surprise over, Halliday, Draper, 
Robertson, Angel, and the rest of the Savages dropped knives, 
cucumbers, and onions, and made desperate grabs and clutches 
at their coats, whilst I stood nobly forth to sacrifice myself upon 
the altar of Bohemia. Constituting myself spokesman for the 
party, I addressed a few confused apologetic words to Ville- 
messant and the other members of the deputation. What I said 
I do not exactly remember, except in so far that Henri Murger 
figured in my short address, and something about "la vie de 
Bohdme," and that there was no nonsense or false pretence about 
us Savages. Villemessant replied somewhat drily, it struck me,. 
" Je m'en 



Tom Robertson, I think, I knew first in 1861. I took to him 
amazingly from the very commencement of our acquaintance. 
He had not yet achieved dramatic fame then. I remember he 
asked my opinion and advice upon a novel which he had written,. 
entitled "The Stepmother;" it showed considerable power and 



520 REMINISCENCES OF 

promise. He was not in over-brilliant trim just then. The 
turning-point of his fortunes, I remember, was a successful 
entertainment which he wrote for Woodin, and in which there 
was a most amusing song, "I went into Society." And 
'"Society" was the title also of his first successful dramatic 
venture. He was a glorious fellow, full of fun and frolic, and 
one of the best actors of the stage. He was a splendid 
raconteur. 

I once gave a small party to a select band of Savages, 
Draper, Millward, Archer, the three then surviving Broughs 
(William, John, 'and Lionel), Tegetmeier, Halliday, Tooby, 
Bennett, Eobertson, and a few more. 

There was a very pretty young girl, and a hideously ugly 
old woman, to wait upon us. The poor old woman's face was 
deeply wrinkled and furrowed, and her hands were cracked all 
over, winter and summer. She had the assurance of an Old 
Bailey lawyer. So I had bestowed upon her the nickname of Shy 
Cracks, which would alternately please her or offend her. She 
had a notion that if she waited upon us in person, the lion's 
share at least of the expected generous "tip" Savages are 
proverbially noble by nature would find its way into her pocket. 
The young girl was really shy, and cared not much to appear 
before my guests. Says ancient ugliness to young prettiness, 
*' The gents don't vant a chit like you to vait on 'em, them vants 
me ; so give me the trea to take in." 

Well, when the old woman entered, her face made more 
hideous by the thick smirk spread all over it on the occasion, 
Tom Robertson, who was just opening a bottle of stout, dropped 
the bottle, which broke on the floor, letting out the precious 
liquor, and exclaimed, in a voice of horror, "Angels and ministers 
of grace, defend us ! Sycorax, as I live ! " " Beggin' yer parding, 
sir," the old woman cried, dropping a deep courtesy, "that ain't 
my name, that's honly the doctor's fun Mrs. Payne, is my 
name." 

Eobertson was as kind-hearted a man as ever breathed. He 
had promised me and but for his most premature death the 
promise would have been kept to the letter to bring out, in his 
own name, my comedy of " An Appalling Appetite," under the 
" monologic " designation, " Appalling." He would have leavened 
the dough, and put in the fruit, to make the cake palatable. 
Had success attended the venture, he would have admitted me 
to the fullest share of honour and profit. Eheu! Die aliter 
visum. The gods, somehow, will never see things through my 
optics. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 321 

Talking of " fruit " reminds me of the late Fred Lawrence, 
one of the original founders of the club. 

Lawrence and Frank Talfourd had done a small farce in 
partnership. 

" Which of you put the fruit into that sweet little plum-cake 
by Talfourd and you, Lawrence? " Leicester Buckingham asked 
the latter. 

" Egad ! " was the ready reply : " plumb-cake, you mean. 
Why, it is heavy as dough without leaven ; and there is not even 
the smallest currant in it to give it the semblance of a chance of 
a run." 

Lawrence had a pretty spontaneous wit. 

" Lawrence," said Halliday one day to him, " you will never 
get into heaven. St. Peter will not let you in." 

" Won't he, though P " said Lawrence. " Egad, if he don't, I'll 
serve him with a copy of Holy Writ." 

Robert Soutar, of the Morning Advertiser, said on a similar 
occasion. " Tut, mon, there is sure to be a card of admission for 
Mr. Soutar and friend."* 

One day Fred Lawrence told us that he had been a midship- 

* It was at a grand spread given to " literature and the arts " by one 
Henry Davies, a solicitor, npon whom the final writ of ejectment from 
this pleasant world has been served long since. It was in 1855, I think, 
at 14, Buckingham Street, Strand, where Davies occupied elegantly 
furnished chambers. Harry Davies, who was a good-natured fellow in 
the main, had an insane hankering after Bohemia. He ardently wished 
also to shine in literature in connection with his special legal pursuit ; 
so he got me to write for him a practical treatise upon the Mercantile 
and Bankrupt Law of France, which was published by Emngham Wilson, 
in May, 1855. 

When the magnum opus made its triumphant appearance in the 
world of law and letters, displaying on the title-page the illustrious (to 
be) names of Henry Davies and Emile Laurent, a French avout, who 
had supplied the ingredients of the dish prepared by me, Henry waxed 
generous : he paid me thirty guineas, and invited some twenty literati 
and artists to a dejeuner dinatoire at his chambers. There was a large 
stock of wine laid in, or more correctly speaking, laid on, including 
some three or four dozen of hock. Robert Soutar was one of us. He 
paid particular attention to the said hock, but declined altogether to 
pay the least attention to our Amphitryon, whose every attempt to tell 
us incidents of his life he would cruelly cut short with a peremptory, 
" Shut up, mon o' the hoose, gie us nane o' your clack, mair o' your 
German wine." 

It was on this occasion that Gas May how told Robert Soutar that he, 
for his nasty conduct to our noble host, would never be admitted to 
heaven Ne sutor ultra portas ! St. Peter would cry out to him; 
" Nay, Soutar, you will not get beyond these gates." The quotation in 
the text was the reply. 

T 



322 REMINISCENCES OF 

man in the royal navy in his early days, and that he had served 
in China, and had been wounded. 

" Where ? " asked a brother Savage. 

" Where ? " replied Lawrence, " why, in the back, to be sure. 
You don't think I am so foolish as to face an enemy ? " 

"What a dull, stupid Jew you are!" cried Lawrence in a 
half-passion one day to a Hebrew gentleman, who somehow could 
not see the brilliant advantages of a grand financial scheme 
proposed to him by Fred. 

" Well, Lawrence, if it comes to that, so are you," retorted 
the offended Israelite. 

"No, no, my friend," was the ready reply; "I am a Jeu 
d'Esprit." 

A distinguished member of the club had somehow come to 
be looked upon as something of a gourmand. 

" Egad," said Lawrence to me one day, " I have just come 

from seeing feed. Mutton chops to follow, sir ! and they 

did follow, egad ! they went down his blessed throat like a pair 
of slippers thrown down a well- staircase." 

William Homer was on a cold winter's day seated before the 
fire in the club-room in the Lyceum Tavern the same room 
which had once upon a time temporarily accommodated the 
famous Beefsteak Club it was very cold, and Bill luxuriated all 
by himself in the cheerful blaze. Lawrence came in half -frozen. 

" Let me come to the fire, old man," he cried to Bill, who, 
however, being in one of his very rare "tantrum" humours, 
surlily declined granting the request. " k You won't let me come 
to the fire, Bill? " said Lawrence. " Very well, then,' I'll just do 
with you what the bull did with the dog that would keep him 
from the manger." 

" And what may that be ? " queried the noble William, with a 
half-sneer. 

" I'll toss you for it," was Fred Lawrence's reply. Bill laughed, 
and made room for his Savage brother. 

One evening four of us were wending our way to Camden 
Town Andrew Halliday, Fred Lawrence, W. B. T. Tegetmeier, 
and my humble self. Teg was carrying a basket with pigeons. 
He met a bird-fancier on the road, and requested us to proceed 
to the pub at the next corner, where he would join us in five 
minutes. The moment we entered the said pub, where we found 
Boniface smiling behind the bar, Lawrence began one of his little 
games. 

" I know," he said, " he wants to get a living, poor fellow ; 
but surely that is no reason that he should positively persecute 
us with his cursed pigeons. We have told him over and over 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 323 

again that we don't want to buy any ; why, then, will he not 
leave us alone ? And, egad ! here he is again ! What a cursed 
nuisance ! " as poor innocent Teg came in smiling, with his pigeon- 
basket on his arm. "Now then, you sir, we don't want your 
pigeons. Why will you run after us in this disgraceful fashion?" 
cried Lawrence, with an injured air. 

The landlord, who had been listening, thought it incumbent 
upon him to interfere, in favour of his customers, with the 
pertinacious pigeon-dealer. 

"Be off," he shouted to Teg, who was taken quite aback. 

" You are told that the gentlemen don't want your d d 

pigeons. Why can't you take a refusal ? Clear out of that, or 
I'll send for the police. It is too bad that fellows like you should 
insist upon forcing their wares on people. Do not you see that 
you may be driving my customers away, my good fellow ? " 

Teg looked absolutely aghast at this strange reception ; and 
I am afraid he felt a little annoyed at the time; but our shouts 
of laughter, and the confusion of Boniface, soon made it all right 
with him. 

. Halliday and Lawrence wrote " Kenilworth " together, which 
was successfully produced at the Strand. I was there on the 
first night. It was a comparatively easy task for me to discern 
and allot the respective paternity of most of the jokes. "Dinna 
forget," in connection with the absence of the noonday meal, was 
Halliday's, for instance, to a dead certainty. When the Virgin 
Queen is reluctant to step on Sir Walter's cloak, the gallant 
knight urges her most warmly not to mind soiling it. 

" But why," asks royal Bessy " why insist you so much P * 

To which Baleigh replies : 

" Because, your grace, if I should wish to pawn it, 
I'll tell m'uncle I have had a sovereign 'pon it." 

This any one of the cognoscenti would be safe to put down at 
once to Lawrence's account. 

There was a certain aspirant to dramatic fame, who wrote a 
farce, and asked ( Fred Lawrence's candid opinion about the 
article. 

" Egad, my boy," said Lawrence, " it is a screamer ! " 

"Ah," replied the gratified author, "I meant it to be BO. 
Isn't it smart and sharp, now ? " 

" Tart and sharp it is," said Lawrence enthusiastically. " Why, 
the mere reading of it set my teeth on edge ! " 

Another friend of mine, " Gus " Mayhew, was a dear hearty 
fellow, but an inveterate and rather cruelly-given " goaker." 

T 2 



324 REMINISCENCES OF 

Watts Phillips brought out " Joseph Chavigny " at the Adelphi. 
We were there, the lot of us, on the first night. Well, the piece 
was a success, slightly qualified, with the public a succes d'estime, 
they might call it in France. What it was with us I do not wish 
to remember. After the performance was over, Draper, William 
Brough, Gus Mayhew, and self happened to pop promiscuously 
upon the author. Gus shook him warmly by the hand. 

" On my soul, Watts," he said most earnestly, " I did not give 
you credit for this." 

" You think it is good, then ? " said Watts, hugely gratified. 

" Good ! " was the cruel friend's reply. " Good ? Well, good 
certainly is not the word." 

Frank Talfourd was Lawrence's partner in the plum-cake 
farce dear, clever, genial Frank, who, alas ! fell so early a victim 
to that insidious disease which ruthlessly strikes down so many 
of the most brilliant and promising of the young men and women 
of these lands. 

Poor Frank had a deal of dry humour in him. There was an 
admiring young friend of his who was occasionally pestering him 
with some unmeaning remark or other. " Frank," said this youth 
to him one night at the Lyceum, " Frank, you never wear a great 
coat." " No," replied Frank, after a moment's reflection, " I don't 
think I ever was." 

It was in the club -room at the Lyceum Tavern. Frank had 
settled with the waiter, and was just going, when someone 
challenged him jocularly to reach the gaselier with his long legs. 
Frank gave a kick upward, which brought down one of the 
glass globes in a smash. He coolly rang the bell, to ask the 
waiter what he had to pay. " You have paid, sir," said the waiter ; 
"and you have had nothing since." "Oh yes," replied Frank, 
pointing to the vacant place of the broken globe, " I had a glass 
off that." 

Poor Frank ! The Spiritualists laid hold of him, and I verily 
believe shortened his life with their cursed nonsense. I have 
some reason to know that on one occasion they actually made the 
brilliant author of " Ion" rap out to his son an intimation that he 
was soon to die. " Live meetly, for we soon shall meet," was 
the message. I violently suspected Leicester Buckingham of 
being at the bottom of this cruel deception played upon an 
impressionable young man in an advanced stage of consumption. 
Frank strove most earnestly to convert me me of all men ! 
to his own belief in spirits and their curiously clumsy manifes- 
tations. On one occasion, when he and Leicester Buckingham 
were hard at me, I threw my pocket-book on the ground, and 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 325 

asked them to tell their spirits to lift it up, and hand it back to 
me. Buckingham said it was not likely the spirits would oblige 
a scorner and scoffer like me. Frank, however, said he thought 
the spirits ought to do something at least to secure so valuable a 
conquest, and he was rather staggered by their positive refusal to 
oblige. 

Herbert Fry having once made a remark which led Buck- 
ingham to believe that he was a Unitarian, Leicester hastened 
to confide the discovery to the spirit of his father, the late James 
Silk Buckingham, who was a rather frequent visitor at what I 
used to call the Arundel Club spirit table. One evening 
Buckingham declared the spirit then and there present declined 
entering into communication with the substantialities around 
him, on account of the presence of a Unitarian, Herbert Fry, to 
wit. Fry bluntly accused the spirit of lying, whereupon 
Buckingham bade him withdraw his words, the spirit being no 
less a personage than Leicester's father. "I do not care a pin for 
that," cried Herbert Fry angrily ; " I tell you I am not a Uni- 
tarian, I belong to the Church of England." " Did I not under- 
stand from yourself that you were a Unitarian?" Leicester 
incautiously asked, letting the cat out of the bag with a 
vengeance. 

Prowse's humorous letter, to which I have so often had 
occasion to refer in the course of my later reminiscences, con- 
tains a jocular allusion also to E. C. Barnes, in connection with 
an alleged keepership of the umbrellas, etc., at the Royal 
Academy. 

This joke has a good-natured sting in it, with the point 
turned, not against Barnes, however, but against the Academy, 
of which he is not a member simply because that sort of thing 
does not always go by merit alone. If it did well, well! as 
Prowse says. But what is the use of speculating in ifs P How- 
ever, I have no right or call to judge, perhaps, not being an art 
critic, as one of the great " Dailies " cognoscenti told me, some 
years since, when I was rashly venturing to indulge in an 
M eccentric " opinion of my own upon the merits and demerits of 
a certain painting by a full-grown and full-blown RA. Still, I 
will maintain that Barnes is a true artist, more especially facile 
princeps in coloration. It used to be said of Courbet that even 
his pot-boilers were glowing with the fire of genius. The same 
may conscientiously be averred of Barnes. What a sad pity 
though, that the cruel exigencies of the angusta res domi should 
compel the wasting of that noble flame to make the domestic pot 



326 REMINISCENCES OF 

boil ! I am proud to number Barnes among my best and dearest 
and kindest friends.* 

Ay, in those glorious olden days the artist branch of the 
Savage Club bore many boughs laden with rich fruit and pro- 
mising blossoms. Landells, one of the original starters of Punch, 
was among the earliest members of the Club; so was Deane. 
Then we had Benjamin Clayton, a dear old friend of mine ; Julian 
Portch and Paul Gray, delightfully fanciful both of them carried 
off ere their full prime ; Soden, a right good fellow and amusing 
companion, full of quaint conceits ; Connor, White, Lidderdale, 
Morgan, Thompson, Gordon Thomson, Whistler, William Brunton, 
the fertile contributor to Fun and other illustrated papers, the 
genial designer of the frontispiece to the first series of the 
" Savage Club Papers," which abounds in speaking likenesses- 
of old members ; Gilbert, of the " Bab Ballads," " Her Majesty's 
Ship Pinafore" and a bewildering variety of other brilliant 
ventures and successes in divers fields of literature and the arts ; 
Charles Bennett, a dear, dear friend, of whom I have already had 
occasion to speak ; Harrison Weir, one of my oldest chums. 
Some thirty years ago, when I was doing translation work with 
my friend Elwes, at King's Arms. Yard, Harrison Weir had set 
up his studio in one of our rooms, where I passed many happy 
hours in genial companionship with that ingenious artistic 
delineator of the animal world and right good fellow. 

Then there was Coughtrie, great in portraiture, who, some- 
twenty years back, presented the Club with a counterfeit pre- 
sentment of my humble self, which was at the time by everyone 
declared to be a speaking likeness, though I myself could not see 
it, as I had a rooted conviction that it made me look twenty years- 
older then than I ought to have looked twenty years after. 

However, in those days the boys would always persist in 
bestowing patriarchal length of days upon me. George Cruikshank, 
who surely was a very old boy himself, would mischievously affirm 
that I was an "ancient" when he had seen me first, on the occasion 
of one of my earlier visits to England, in 1832. 

Now this professed speaking likeness of mine seemed to lend 
a semblance of likelihood to this most monstrous crammer of old 

* Alas ! another cross by the wayside. Even while reading over 
this paragraph for press, I learn that this dear kind friend is no more. 
He was cut down and gathered in by the universal reaper at the very 
time that I was penning the lines in the text above though I knew ifc 
not then. However, what is written is written. Let this stand as a 
feeble in memoriam tribute to the artist, the man, and the friend. 



I 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 327 

George. Well, the said portrait has come to grief since, I am 
happy to say; some unknown admirer of mine would seem to 
have walked it off from the Club premises. My blessings on the 
abductor ! It ia a comfort to me to know that that picture can 
no longer testify against me now in puncto cetatis. The artist, my 
dear friend Coughtrie, soon after went to Hong Kong not for 
me though, but simply for his own success in life. The year before 
last he was over here on a six months' visit to the old country, 
with his family. He is married to a daughter of the late Harry 
Rogers. They all went back to China last year in January. I 
wonder shall we two ever meet again this side the dark boundary 
of the mysterious Yonder P Well, well ! whatever Mr. Thorns 
may think of it, there are centenarians ; ay, some of them even 
more than one and a half times over. If the universal destroyer 
oould forget old Parr until that reverend patriarch was running 
on fast to a hundred and sixty-two, why should he not forget to 
think of me P I only trust he is too busy to indulge in light 
reading, or else these "reminiscences" might inconveniently 
remind him of my existence. 

. I feel disposed to place among the foremost artists of the old 
Club, George Augustus Sala, that wondrously complex genius, 
who may be truly said to be facile princeps in omnibus artibus et 
quibusdam aliis. I know that when a mere boy he did some of 
the most charming stage scenes for Maddox at the Princess's 
Theatre. 

In 1851 he painted the staircase at Gore House, Kensington, 
for Alexis Soyer, and he painted it in a manner to extort almost 
involuntary admiration from Thackeray, no mean artist himself, 
and an adept at pen-and-ink sketches, crayon illustrations, etc. 

In the same Exhibition year I saw Sala design and engrave 
on copper a series of fanciful New Zealand sketches, which were 
not only intensely funny but of high artistic merit withal. I 
more particularly remember two of the series, which made every 
one roar who looked on them: A New Zealand chief in full 
costume to wit, a pair of Wellingtons on his savage feet, and a 
general's feathered hat on his noble head et prceterea nihil ; and 
a national feast of the New Zealanders, with a boiled missionary 
brought in dished on a plank. 

In 1850 I was in Paris with Sala. One day wo went to that 
most dismal repository of slain or self-slain humanity, yclept 
the Morgue. There lay before us the greenish-blue corpse of 
what, mayhap, a brief fortnight before, had been a fine stalwart 
man in the prime and pride of life an appalling sight to behold. 
Sala made a sketch of it on the spot, so fearfully vivid if the 



328 REMINISCENCES OF 

patent paradox may be permitted to pass that it could not but 
give shivering fits to all who might cast eyes on it. Beneath this 
weird production the cynical fellow wrote, " mutatd persona videas 
me only that I shall not make half so handsome a corpse." He 
sent this to Holt, who told me, some time after, that it had taken 
away for days and nights his appetite and rest. I have occa- 
sionally been permitted to look over a whole series of sketch and 
scrap books of truly plethoric turgescence the productions of 
Sala's pen and pencil, which I trust will one of these days be 
published. An earlier collection of scraps and sketches of his 
was, unfortunately, consumed in a fire at Erith, where he was 
staying, in company with his brother Charles, some time about 
1853, if I remember aright. 

Dear William McConnell was one of the most gifted, as he 
was one of the most genial young artists of the Club, and one of 
the hardest workers and most fertile producers. His numerous 
illustrations to Sala's " Twice Hound the Clock," and in the Train, 
'-' Old London," etc., etc., are so many enduring memorials of his 
wondrous artistic skill and unwearied industry. 

Some time ago I had occasion to call at Hindley's, in Holywell 
'Street, as I always do when in quest of rare old books, etc. 
Charles Hindley, an excellent fellow and a good friend of mine, 
showed me a collection of McConnell's drawings. Even I, who 
had known the young artist, and had admired his extraordinary 
working power, was surprised by the richness, in every sense of 
the term, of the treat spread before my delighted eyes. I knew 
only one artist still more prolific, annis paribus Gustave Dore*, 
the fastest workman I ever met in the artist world alas ! the 
late Gustave Dore now" the indefatigable toiler, facile as well 
as fecund, master of an inexhaustible vein of inventiveness, who 
aye carried out his ideas with phenomenal quickness," as that 
erratic genius, my most excellent friend John Augustus O'Shea, 
expresses it so felicitously. What a profound pity that there 
should now be so many kicks, vicious though impotent, at the 
fame of the dead lion ! 

In 1867, Mr. Mackenzie, the well-known Scotch publisher, 
who was then in Paris exhibiting his splendidly got up one 
hundred guinea edition of the Bible, engaged my services to nego- 
tiate with Gustave Dore for the supply of first-class large illustra- 
tions to a projected magnificent quarto * edition of Shakspeare. 

* I am not quite certain whether it was not a folio edition that 
Mackenzie intended to bring out. I rather feel inclined to believe it was. 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 329 

We agreed upon the terms the handsome sum of 12,000 for 
forty illustrations, to be supplied one per month during three years 
and a quarter. Mackenzie, a very prince of publishers, entered 
into a contract also with Hachette for an English edition of one 
of that firm's most costly works, and nearly completed an engage- 
ment with me for an English adaptation of Schlosser's " Universal 
History." Alas ! all these grand projects were doomed to come 
to naught, owing to unhappy circumstances over which poor 
Mackenzie had no control. 

As for my personal concern in the matter, I once more in life 
missed my tip, to use an expressive vulgarism. Had it been 
otherwise, maybe these reminiscences of mine might never have 
been inflicted upon an indulgent reading public. The greatest 
pity of this most untoward matter was that the projected 
splendid edition of Shakspeare was also stifled in the bud. 
Our progress on the gamut of that grand speculation stuck fast, 
as it were, between Do, re, and me, never reaching beyond, 
to the active fa of realisation. " Atrocious ! " I hear the reader 
exclaim. I admit it fully and freely ; it is atrocious. I feel 
it ; but then, you see, familiar intercourse with the Broughs, 
Byron, and other punning pundits has sapped a mind once 
soberly given to bring laboriously forth and work out ideas, 
instead of idly playing on words. It is the old, old story over 
again: evil communications corrupt good manners. Moreover, 
in the olden days, when I was ponderous-headed, I was wonder- 
fully light-hearted. I am somewhat light-headed now, and 
frivolously given, but my heart is often heavy enough. 

Gustave Core gave me at this time a couple of fanciful 
sketches for the first series of the Savage Club Papers. 

William McConnell was singularly simple and straightforward 
in all his sayings and doings alike. Pretence of any kind had 
little chance with him indeed. 

In the olden days which I am now writing about, a kind of 
mania seemed to have taken possession of many of our set to deal 
in Shakspeare quotations on every occasion, in and out of season, 
always tacking to the tail, " 'hem Shakspeare." 

Now William had at an early period of life been on the stage, 
seriously contemplating a dramatic career. He had given up the 
notion, however ; but he retained the most ardent admiration for 
the wondrous " catholic " poet's every line, and he did not like to 
hear it hackneyed. " Who is this Mr. Shakspeare, of whom you 
are always talking ? " he abruptly asked a distinguished dramatist; 
one day. "Why, Mac, surely you must know Shakspeare," 
replied the distinguished dramatist, utterly taken aback by the 



330 REMINISCENCES OF 

question. "Oh, I see," said Mac, with a slightly contemptuous 
sneer, "you mean the immortal bard. Why, the deuce, then, 
are you always munching his name ? Surely everybody knows 
him!" 

Poor dear McConnell ! He fell an early victim to that ruthless 
blighter of so many brightly promising buds and blossoms in 
this land of ours fell consumption. 

Another of my dearest friends, William Hooper, happily still 
very much to the fore, was also among the artist members of the 
Club. Though more generally known as an accomplished en- 
graver, Hooper is equally distinguished as a designer and 
draughtsman. He is, in brief, a true artist in the truest sense 
of the term, and in nearly every line of art. Strange to say, 
perhaps, he is also one of the best of our Chinese and Japanese 
scholars, and the possessor of a rich collection of rarest curiosities. 
And last though with me certainly not least he is one of the 
very few among my more intimate friends that have thoroughly 
mastered the grand and noble art of preparing a cup of really 
fine tea, infused in a genuine Japanese teapot, the gift of a 
Japanese friend of his, a Samoorai, who, in the olden times, when 
Japan was under the Tycoon's sway, was a feudatory of the 
Daimio Satsuma. The same Japanese gentleman has also kindly 
presented me with a half-dozen gracefully-shaped cups and 
saucers, as a token of his friendly feeling. 

To my mind there is not a more exalted calling than the stage. 
It is a most noble profession indeed to hold up the mirror to 
Nature, to faithfully embody and portray on the mimic boards, 
with the vividness of actual life, the actualities of human life and 
human passions, human joys and human sorrows, the virtues and 
the vices, the foibles and follies of man, his noblest qualities and 
his worst defects, his loftiest soarings and his most abject 
grovellings. Tour true actor is aye the greatest and best moral 
teacher. 

From the early days of my green boyhood up to these late 
days of my (very) mature old age, acting has ever had an almost 
irresistible attraction for me, and true actors have aye claimed my 
most ardent admiration, as I have already more than once had 
occasion to mention in previous sections of these reminiscences. 

I have had the singular good fortune of seeing some of the 
most deservedly renowned actors of the age in some of their most 
famous characters. To enter here exhaustively upon this subject, 
to me fraught with all-absorbing interest, would demand many 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 331 

times over the limited space at my command ; whilst the mere 
recital of a long list of names, most of them most likely unknown 
to many readers in this present generation, would really be worse 
than idle. So I must perforce content myself with the merest 
passing glance at a very few of the most eminent names I have 
in my time seen inscribed on the imperishable scroll of dramatic 
artistic fame. 

First of all, Louis Devrient, the, to my mind, ever unapproach- 
able illustrious chief of a wondrous family of most admirable 
actors. I think it was in 1820, when I was still at the Burg 
school, that I passed a few weeks' vacation in Berlin, with a- fellow- 
pupil of the name of Katt, a most lovable boy, and one of my 
very dearest school friends. He was descended from a branch 
of the same family to which had belonged that most ill-fated 
officer of the Prussian Guards who was so vilely slain, in defiance 
of the law of God and of man alike, by the terrible despot set up- 
by the " Sage of Chelsea," on a pedestal of the said sage's own 
forging, as the lean-ideal of a true monarch. What a blessed 
thing for this poor world of ours that there are not many such 
monarchs in it worthy of the worship of such sages ! Young 
Katt's father was a Junker to the backbone, indeed ; but he was 
a true gentleman withal, and a veritable prince in his hospitality. 

It was during my brief stay here that I met, one evening, the 
first and last time in my life, that most eccentric and erratic 
many-sided genius, Exchequer Court Councillor Hoffmann 
Collot Hoffmann, as he used to be called, to mark the identity of 
his own with Collot's sombrous conceptions. Many-sided he- 
truly was. His wonderful " Notturnos " and his weird tales of 
fantasy will ever secure for his name a first and foremost rank 
among the greatest of German fictionists. He stood equally high 
as a poet and as a composer, and there was potent witchery in his 
pencil, albeit that it was capriciously confined chiefly to more or 
less grotesque political caricatures. And here, along with him 
and other choice spirits, I met his most congenial boon com- 
panion and intimate, Louis Devrient, then in the zenith of his- 
imperishable fame, though but some thirty-six years old. 

Young Katt and self were leading members of the recitation,, 
declamation and acting society of the Burg schoolboys ; and in 
the " bashless " conceit of young puppies as we certainly were 
we could not refrain from revealing this most momentous fact to- 
the high priest of the stage, with whom we amicably claimed the- 
kinship of identity of pursuits and aspirations ! How the great 
man must have flouted us mentally ! He was wondrous kind to 
us, however, and it was, indeed, at his and the "fantastic"" 
councillor's special intercession and request that we youngsters 



332 REMINISCENCES OF 

were graciously permitted to sit up beyond all reasonable hours, 
that we might assist, as the French have it, at a grand musical 
and dramatic soiree, unique of its kind, which will ever remain 
vividly impressed upon my memory. Louis Devrient thrilled all 
present with choice illustrative excerpts from his favourite parts. 
There were, of course, none of the almost indispensable stage 
adjuncts that so materially contribute to enable the actor to drop 
his own identity, as it were, and to thoroughly merge it in his 
assumed part. Yet so potent was the magician-actor's spell that, 
to our entranced and enthralled senses, the man Devrient seemed 
to be gone clean out of existence, and his place taken by the 
marvellous embodiments of Shakspeare and Schiller's wondrous 
creations conjured up before us. 

Only on one occasion during the course of my long life can I 
remember to have been carried away almost as completely by an 
extemporised undress performance of the same exceptional nature 
and high stamp. It was many years ago, when the Savage Club 
was still very considerably in the larva state. One afternon I 
happened to be the only member present in the club-room, when 
& gentleman called and introduced himself to me, for the 
nonce, the sole representative of the distinguished institution, as 
-an actor recently arrived from Australia. 

" Hospitality is innate in the savage breast," says a modern 
writer. I deemed it, of course, incumbent upon me to do the 
honours of the wigwam to the stranger. That he was an actor 
gave him an additional claim to my good offices. 

Somehow or other we came to talk shop. I really do not 
.recollect who was the first to broach the interesting subject; I 
-only know that we were soon in the very midst of discussing it, 
in all its branches and bearings. I cannot tell either how it 
happened that our visitor led or was led up to the immortal 
Swan of Avon and his imperishable creations. I only remember 
that I found myself, somehow, suddenly "translated" into the 
very presence of " high- shouldered," high-vaulting Eichard the 
noble eagle of York, whom inscrutable fate doomed to succumb 
to the base kite of Tudor King Eichard III., ay, every inch a 
king, even in the dramatist's distorted counterfeit deliberately 
nd wilfully distorted, to please the imperious Tudor on the 
throne. 

Stevens justly remarks that the part of Eichard is naturally 
most favourable to a judicious performer, comprehending, as it 
-does, a trait of almost every species of character on the stage 
the hero, the lover, the statesman, the bufioon, the hypocrite, the 
hardened and the repentant sinner, etc. 

And here, if ever, I had a thoroughly judicious performer 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 333 

before me, who beguiled my very senses, changing the club-room, 
to my apprehension, to the vast stage of actual life, and carrying 
me out of myself, as it were, so absolutely, that in the tent scene, 
which formed the concluding illustration but one of the young 
actor's conception of the poet's intention and meaning, I semi- 
unconsciously, at least, needs must join in upon his cues. 

So soon as the spell of this wondrous impersonation had 
ceased, and my sober senses had returned to me, I most warmly 
and heartily expressed my gratitude to the young Australian 
actor for the rich treat he had made me enjoy, somewhat 
enthusiastically adding that the great theatrical desideratum 
of the stage was now within reach of the British playgoer a 
true Shakspearean actor, to wit, in the fullest sense of the term 
praises which he modestly declined to accept, as far exceeding 
his deserts. 

I left London almost immediately after, on an extended 
continental trip, and when I came back to England I was for 
many months so fully occupied with work of another kind that I 
had no leisure to think of theatricals, so I cannot say even 
whether my young friend of a few happy hours ever essayed 
Shakspeare on the London stage ; or, if he did, whether he was 
permitted by manager or stage-manager to follow out with 
absolute freedom his own conception of the characters acted 
by him. An eminent manager said, many years since, that 
Shakspeare in our days spelt bankruptcy; so it may be that 
my young friend had but scanty chance afforded him to perform 
in Shakspearean dramas. I never saw him on the stage, nor did 
I ever meet him again in private society. 

His name was Charles Warner; he was a son of Madame 
Warner the famous actress, who, in the halcyon days of the 
English drama, used to star it so gloriously with Macready. 

Louis Devrient carried his indulgence to young Katt and me 
to the cruel excess of inflicting upon the company the dialogue 
between Don Carlos and Marquis Posa the Spanish prince by 
the boy Katt, the marquis by the other wretched lad. There 
was something demoniacal in the man's nature. When I come 
to think of it now, at some sixty years' interval, I can almost 
fancy I see the fiendish glee with which he beheld the long faces 
of the victims compelled to listen to our awful rant. He made 
glorious amends, however, to the baron and his injured guests ; 
for, having fooled us to the top of our bent, calling us bright 
boys, and opining, with cutting irony, patent to all but our own 
obtuse conceit, that, had we but begun this sort of thing earlier 
in life, say ere we had grown to six, we might have been a pair 



334 REMINISCENCES OF 

of infant Koacii, he suddenly burst into an improvisation of his 
own of the very scene which we had just been so grotesquely 
distorting and burlesquing, acting the part of Carlos and Posa 
alternately, with wondrous power of delicately defined and dis- 
tinctly contrasted individualization, deepest intensity of feeling, 
and most marked emphasis of expression. Next night Devrient 
had to perform " King Lear." He generously offered to take the 
two "infant Boscii" behind the scenes. Behind the scenes! 
In the boldest flight of our aspirations we had hardly dared to 
soar to such an altitude of bliss; it was Olympus to our fond 
imaginations. 

Next day one of young Katt's uncles came up unexpectedly 
irom his estate in Pomerania for the express purpose of seeing 
his promising young nephew. As the time of his intended stay 
in Berlin was limited, the boy had to forego the so fondly antici- 
pated treat, whereat he waxed wroth, and wept bitter tears of 
vexation. There was no help for it, however. He ha.d to stay 
at home, and as my offer to stay with him was rather sulkily 
declined, I had to go alone, and the great actor, who in due 
time came to fetch the two young Eoscii, had to rest content 
with introducing one of them to the boarded, canvased, and painted 
stage-world. I must confess my first peep behind the scenes 
was wof ully disenchanting : many of my cherished illusions were 
ruthlessly destroyed. Alas ! the giant foibles of giant minds ! 
Louis Devrient, the wonderful actor, who walked the boards a 
creative God of impersonation, was a miserable slave to drink. 
It almost seemed to me that he had brought me there to be his 
bottle-holder ; certainly, he gave me a large flask of old pine- 
apple rum to hold, from which he would imbibe deep draughts 
whenever he came off the boards, then sink feebly down upon a 
mattress to rest his exhausted frame, till called again, when he 
would start up with surprising vigour, shake himself together, 
and walk on to the boards every inch a king, to resume absolute 
sway over the minds and senses of the audience. He was no 
longer Devrient then : he was Lear all over, and I felt disposed 
almost to chide my foolish imagination that could possibly have 
fancied this tragic king of tragedy imbibing pineapple rum out 
of a quart bottle. 

Except on the great stage of life, Louis Devrient never made 
an entrance or an exit as Louis Devrient : he always fully imper- 
sonated the character he was representing at the time. 

Once upon a time Mark Lemon took an unfair advantage of a 
wretched gallery boy's wretched joke, to perpetrate, in Punch, a 
Tiler joke still, to the address and at the expense of Benjamin 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 335 

Webster, one of the best nature-actors it was ever my good 
fortune to see on any stage. If I misremember not, it was in 
Robert Landry, one of Webster's great creations. The following 
appeared in Punch : " Enter Mr. Webster as Robert Landry. c My 
heart is dead.' Voice from the gallery : ' How is your poor feet P ' 
Exit Robert Landry as Mr. Webster." 

Mark Lemon was, in some respects at least, very much like 
Falstaff, whom he represented on the stage with no mean success : 
he was not only witty himself, but the cause of wit in others at 
least he kept up Punch, and the writers on it, to the fullest joking 
standard. 

I remember one day being at my respected publishers', Ted and 
Bill Tinsley, when Mark walked in " quite promiscuous " as Mrs. 
Brown has it. Mrs. Riddell, one of the best lady novelists of the 
period, had just written " Maxwell Drewitt," one of her very best 
novels. Mark asked the trio of us what was the latest riddle 
out P We all three confessed our inability to give a satisfactory 
reply, and gave it up accordingly. " It is founded upon you, 
Bill," the wretched punster said, with a triumphant chuckle, 
" Maxwell drew it, you and Ned discounted it, and, the strangest 
part, and cream of the joke, the B. P. have taken it up even ere 
due." This was so truly atrocious, that we took the perpetrator 
at once to the " Red Lion," and sternly bade and made him stand 
Sam. Eheu! genial Mark Lemon has been long numbered with 
the majority, yet I can see his jovial face before me now, and 
hear the ripplings of his fat chuckle. 

Mark Lemon was one of the original founders of Punch. 
Others of the alas ! long-since departed bright phalanx ridendo 
dicentium vera, that fought so spiritedly and with such exuberance 
of subtlest wit and raciest humour under his banner, are also 
enshrined in my affectionate remembrance : Albert Smith, Douglas 
Jerrold, the witty jesting brothers Gilbert and William a Beckett, 
Thackeray, Shirley Brooks, and last, though certainly not least, 
big Mortimer Collinslarge of frame, large of heart, large of 
mind. 

There was once upon a time an Iberian king named Alphonso, 
dubbed "the Wise" by his nattering courtiers. To be sure he 
was wise in his own conceit at least, for he found grievous fault 
with a great many things in God's world. It is related of him 
that he used to say : " Had I been consulted in the work of 
creation, there might have been a few blunders less." Now there 
have always been, and there will be for ever and aye, numbers of 
people, kings as well as cattle of the common herd, who, though 
not named Alphonso, are possessed of the same sort of wisdom. 
I am ashamed to confess that I somehow seem to belong to this 



336 REMINISCENCES OF 

class of sages. Once upon a time I was holding forth upon 
cosmogonyln general a question which has puzzled philosophers 
in all ages, as Ephraim Jenkinson so eloquently expressed ifc to 
Dr. Primrose and upon man and the structure and functions of 
his body in particular. I semi-j ocularly expressed a " confident " 
opinion, more meo, that it would certainly have been more con- 
ducive' to man's general well-being to have had given him two 
stomachs and no liver. Mortimer, who was present, briefly 
observed that there was more folly than wisdom in that remark. 

Some time after the lamented death of poor Mortimer, I 
casually met his bereaved widow in Fleet Street, on her way to 
some succession or administration office or other, escorted by 
Draper, the (most absolutely) honorary solicitor of the club and 
all its members. 

" Ah ! " cried Mrs. Collins to me, " my dear husband thought 
of you on the very day before he departed this life. ' The doctor 
is right,' he said, 'it would be better for man if he had two 
stomachs and no liver.' " 

To return to Louis Devrient. Several years after I saw him 
in some of his most famous Shakspearean impersonations 
which embraced the very widest range of character parts, from 
saddest tragedy to merriest comedy : from Othello, Eichard III., 
Macbeth, Lear, Shylock, etc., to Petruchio, Mercutio, Falstaff, etc. 
He was equally unapproachable in all and any of these parts. I 
never had the good fortune to see him as Mephistopheles, in 
Goethe's " Faust," a part for which his physical conformation, and 
the marked " Satanry," if the term may be allowed to pass of 
his facial expression, must have fitted him especially, more 
indeed, than any other actor I have ever seen in this character 
on any stage. 

I saw him, however, as Franz Moor, in Schiller's "Kauber," 
to my mind, the nearest practicable human approach to Goethe's 
conception of the cynical demon. I have always been highly 
impressionable, and Louis Devrient's Franz Moor was a truly 
wondrous piece of acting nature to the life. I have come across 
some villains in my life, and I have seen some on the boards, but 
a more stupendously villanous scoundrel than Louis Devrient's 
Franz Moor I never saw before or since indeed, my feelings 
were soon wrought to such an intolerable pitch, that Franz's 
intensely passionate threatening cry to unhappy Amalia that 
" she should yet be his ! " excited me to uncontrollable wrath. 
Forgetting all around, I jumped right up from my seat in the 
pit, shaking my fist furiously at the ruffian on the stage, and 
was with difficulty restrained by my cooler friends from making 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 337 

an arrant fool of myself, by apostrophising the great actor in 
slightly unbecoming terms. With his eagle eye Louis Devrient 
took in my action, patent and intended, and he sent a fiendish 
grin in my direction. Next day, when I went to him to apologise, 
he told me that I had paid him the highest compliment he had 
ever received in his theatrical career ; only, he added, with playful 
irony, he had hardly expected such an outburst from Marquis 
Posa, the calm philosopher so grandly portrayed by me in years 
gone by, in my " Infant Roscius " capacity. 

Only on three occasions have I in after-life ever been betrayed 
into similar irrational ebullitions of wrathful feeling. It is now 
many years since I went on a certain evening to see " Dearer than 
Life" performed at the Queen's Theatre, Long Acre. I was 
charmed with the play and with every actor and actress in it 
save one the villain of the piece. I felt elated with Michael 
Garner in his humble prosperity, and was ready to cry over his 
unmerited sufferings, so pathetically portrayed by Toole. I 
admired and applauded Lionel Brough's splendid bit of cha- 
racter-acting in Uncle Ben. But I could not stomach Henry 
Irving's fearfully vivid delineation of the cool cynical villain Bob 
Gasset. My friends Jacobsen and George Shears, who were with 
me, had no end of trouble to hinder me bursting forth into 
unseemly vociferating denunciation of the "scoundrel," as I 
called him (sotto voce), to soothe my outraged feelings in some 
measure at least. 

Even after the performance was over, and we were seated in 
social communion with Lionel Brough and other choice spirits, I 
would not cool down, but, I am sorry to confess, I would persist 
in animadverting severely upon the immoral turpitude of the 
character personated by Mr. Henry Irving, not without some 
very thinly disguised disparaging reflections upon the gentleman 
who could impersonate such a character to the very life. 

A few days after, I happened to dine with Mr. Irving at my 
friend William Tinsley's. Lionel Brough was one of the guests. 
I soon discovered, to my intense dismay, that he had peached. 
I had to tender my humblest apologies, of course. Yet, all well 
and duly considered, my so uncompromisingly expressed angry 
protest against the " living truth " of the impersonation was 
truly the highest meed of appreciation in the power of any 
man to bestow upon the excellent actor who had literally forced 
so " flattering an insult " from him by his wondrous talent. 

Another occasion was at the Olympic, during the run of my 
dear departed friend Halliday's " Little Em'ly." I went there 
one night with Draper to witness the performance. Well, Miss 

z 



338 REMINISCENCES OF 

Fanny Addison Eose Dartle worried the unhappy heroine with 
snch truly ferocious and fiendish zest, that I could not stand by 
calmly to see it done. I am ashamed to confess that, in my 
uncontrollable wrath, I actually forgot even my manhood to such 
a fearful extent as to ask Draper for a ginger-beer bottle, which 
was out of my reach, but stood handy to his. He thought it> 
the wiser course not to give ifc to me. I shudder to think what 
might have been the awful consequences, had he weakly given 
way to my desire. And the excellent actress, whose truthful 
impersonation of the Dartle fiend was thus potent to rouse my 
blind ire, was the daughter of a dear friend and highly esteemed 
artist Addison, one of our most valued dramatic members. 

The third occasion here referred to was years before. It was 
at the St. James's, in the " Gamester," in which Frederick 
Lemaitre performed the principal part. Oudinot, an excellent 
French actor, played the tempting villain who lures the ill- 
starred hero of the piece to the murder of the young stranger 
under his roof his own son, though he knoweth it not. The 
horribly eloquent gesture with which Oudinot pointed out the 
knife the instrument of the suggested murder was so ghastly 
realistic that I started up in the utmost excitement, and was 
with difficulty restrained by my companion, Mr. East, of 
Mitchell's, from shouting out: Assassin! However, in this 
instance the public were with me, and Oudinot was actually 
requested to soften down the fearful realism of his acting in this 
scene ! 

Louis Devrient left the stage of life in 1832, at the compara- 
tively early age of forty-eight. He was emphatically one of the 
greatest tragedians that ever wore buskin, and he was equally 
wonderful in his humorous, in his pathetic, and in his comic 
impersonations. I have in my time seen some of the best 
Falstaffs on the stage Barrett and Phelps, for instance but 
not one of them ever seemed to me to come quite up to the rich 
nnctuousness of Devrient'a fat knight ; and in Mercutio he was 
simply unapproachable. 

I only knew one English actor who, to my mind, had in him 
the true germ and kernel of a Devrient the late Frederick 
Eobson, in whom the gifts of high tragic power, deep pathos, rich 
humour, comic mirth, and farcical fun were so harmoniously 
blended together as all will readily admit who had the good 
fortune of seeing him in the admirable burlesques of Frank 
Talfourd and Eobert Brough. 

Eobson was, indeed, an actor of the highest stamp; in him 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 339 

the extremes of the sublime and the ridiculous came very near 
meeting only that his acting ever kept preponderatingly sublime, 
and that even the loudest burst of laughter that greeted the 
wonderful little man's comic play and utterances had in them, 
maybe unconscious to actor and audience alike, a subdued under- 
current of sobs and tears. Old playgoers who may remember 
his burlesque renderings of Shylock, Macbeth, Masaniello, and 
Medea, will, I believe, assent to this view. 

I remember his truly marvellous performance of the part of 
Medea in Robert Brough's burlesque. Before the piece began, I 
went behind the scenes with the author, where we found Eobson 
in a state of extreme nervousness, as it had been credibly reported 
that the lady tragedian, whom he was about to imitate (not to 
travesty, mind, for there truly was nothing of the buffoon pure 
and simple in Frederick Robson*) Madame Ristori, was actually 
in the theatre. Well, with this overpowering oppression upon 
him, he contrived to achieve a glorious success. His Medea was 
a truly grand tragic figure, gracefully draped in a light veil of 
burlesque. She who had created the intensely tragic character 
of ill-starred Medea was so deeply impressed by the little man's 
wonderful tragi-comic reproduction of her own creation which 
she had been led to believe by a " kind friend " of Robson's would 
turn out a farcical caricature that she could not refrain from 
there and then presenting to the great actor the flattering tribute 
of her gratification and admiration. She came round accordingly 
at once, escorted by that most courteous of gentlemen and most 
urbane of noblemen, Earl Granville, who joined the lady in over- 
whelming the shy man with well-merited compliments. When 
we had Robson to ourselves again, he cried like a child partly 
with pleasure, partly with distress at his nervous awkwardness, 
which he said " must have made me look like a fool." 

I love dearly to speculate upon might-have-beens, though I 
am quite aware of the utter futility and folly of the practice. 
Had the marvellously gifted Robson but enjoyed the incalculable 
benefit of an early intelligent dramatic training, instead of having 
to work his way painfully through the taprooms and parlours of 
public-houses, or had he but lived to grow fully conscious of the 
wondrous power and genius still semi-dormant in him, what a 
tragedian the English stage might have boasted of ! But he was 
doomed to die in the prime of his dramatic life. A.las ! as he 

* Strange enough to relate, perhaps, a distinguished manager and 
eminent actor of the period sneeringly expressed to Brough and me his 
confident anticipation that the British public would soon get tired of 
that buffoon Eobson ! Robert and myself declined even to argue the 
supposition, giving thus mortal offence to the great boss. 

z 2 



340 REMINISCENCES OF 

shared in the great Louis Devri exit's genius, so he shared 
unhappily, also in his worst foible. Let us drop the curtain ! 

In the days when Louis Devrient was in the zenith of his 
fame, many bright stars illumined the theatrical firmament of 
Germany. The most resplendent of them was Henry Marr, the 
favourite pupil of W. L. Schmidt, the renowned Hamburg stage 
manager. 

It was in 1827 that I saw Marr for the first time. He was 
some ten or twelve years my senior, and even at his comparatively 
early age thirty-one or thirty-two, at the most he had already 
achieved no mean dramatic celebrity, and taken his place in the 
very foremost rank of the actors of the day. I had a letter of 
introduction to him, from his old master, W. L. Schmidt, of 
Hamburg, who had known me from a boy, and indulgently sym- 
pathised with my theatrical craze. It was in Brunswick, then 
under the eccentric sway of young Duke Charles, the elder of the 
two orphan sons left behind by the " fated Chieftain," who had 
so gallantly laid down his life at Quatre Bras. 

Shylock was the first character in which I saw Henry Man*. 
It was a wonderful impersonation, akin to Devrient's in concep- 
tion and execution, yet with subtle, delicately-differing touches, 
which unmistakably marked it as a distinct individualisation. I 
cannot fexpress the difference, as I felt it, better than by saying 
that Devrient took the more devilish, Marr the more human, view 
of Shylock. For Devrient's Jew I felt more hatred than pity, for 
Marr's more pity than hatred. 

The Brunswick Court Theatre had at the time one of the very 
best theatrical companies it has ever been my, or, for the matter 
of that, I believe any one else's, good fortune to see, pulling and 
working harmoniously together. I make bold to say that even 
the famous Meiningen Company of the present day does not come 
up to the high standard then attained by Duke Charles's com- 
pany of artists, under the ostensible general- direction of Dr. 
Klingemann, one of the most intellectual actors and stage- 
managers of the first half of this century at least. There were, 
besides Henry Marr, men like Schiitz, Gassman, Grosser, Kettel, 
and others of the same high stamp ; and there was sweet Betty 
Dermer, a most charming, most graceful, and most natural 
dramatic singer, gifted with a wonderfully insinuating mezzo- 
soprano. Her I saw and heard as Amazili, in " Jessonda," and 
my memory revels to this present hour in the wondrous treat to my 
senses. I cannot tell how it came to pass I suppose it was that 
I was very young then, and enthusiastically given, and tenderly 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 341 

impressionable but I fell over head and ears in love with the 
witching Viennese. 

I have heard the incomparable Catalani, and the terrible Pasta ; 
sweet Julia Grisi, and the wondrous Swedish Nightingale; 
Persiani, Piccolomini, Patti, and many other prime donne. I knew 
Henrietta Sontag* in her proudest prime, and I have heard her 
sing her very sweetest. Johanna Wagner's Fides, in the 
" Prophet," which I saw and heard in Berlin, in 1853, impressed 
me much, and some years after I enthusiastically applauded her 
"La tremenda ultrice spada" at Her Majesty's Theatre, in the 
Hay market, where, forgetful of Gye's generous kindness to her, 
she elected to sing for Lumley. Yet not one of all these truly 
great artists ever carried me so completely off my sober balance 
as Betty Dormer did in those days of my hot youth, when Charles 
was Duke of Brunswick, and Dr. Klingemann his ostensible 
general theatrical director. 

Henry Marr was pleased to take an interest in me, hailing 
me indulgently as a might-have-been colleague. He introduced 
me to several actors and actresses on the wider stage of actual 
life. To Legation Councillor Dr. Klindworth for one. Klind- 
worth was one of the most active and most astute political 
intriguers of the age, and one of Metternich and Gentz's sharpest 
tools. Acting under the Austrian Chancellor's instructions, he 
had written a pamphlet in defence of Duke Charles, wm'ch had 
procured him the title of Councillor of Legation at the Brunswick 
Court, and a place in the Duke's Cabinet. To those acquainted 
with the political history of Europe since 1815, the name and 
fame of this man must be familiar. In 1827, when I made his 
acquaintance at Brunswick, he was still a comparatively yourtg . 
man, yet he had already a pretty eventful career behind him. 

Many years after, in June, 1848, I came into more intimate 
contact with Klindworth in London, in connection with* the 
Obsexvateur de fjondpes, a weekly political paper started by him 
in the interest of Prince Metternich. I have already alluded to"*- 
this in another part of these " Reminiscences." Before this I had 
casually met him in Paris, about 1845 it must have been, where 
he was Councillor of State, and one of the most trusted secret 

* I mdflher for the last time in Paris, in 1850, in the fall of the year, 
when she had her photograph taken by a Fraukfort friend of mine. 
Her likeness was rather difficult to catch, so we had five tries before we 
succeeded. On the occasion of the fourth essay she suddenly pushed 
forward her arm which of course placed it out of focus. In my eager, 
ness I laid hold of the offending limb with my hand, which the operation 
going on at the time simply spoiled that counterfeit presentment of 
the charming cantatrice. 



342 REMINISCENCES OF 

agents of the "immaculate " Gnizot, whose whole art of govern- 
ment was based on corruption. Even here, and though ostensibly 
in the French State service as a highly trusted, highly salaried 
official, he was still acting, I had reason to believe, in the interest 
of his Austrian patron, who, in fact, had placed him there. 

In 1867 I again chanced to meet Klindworth in Paris, where 
he was still intriguing, the same as of old. He was then 
Councillor of Legation in the service of his ex-Majesty of 
Hanover, whom he had, by his pro- Austrian counsels, contributed 
to lure into the field, in 1866, on the Austrian side. He was now 
striving to bring about a Franco-Austrian alliance against 
Prussia. It was certainly no fault of his that the scheme did 
not succeed. He found considerably more than his match in 
Bismarck's agents, and Count Andrassy disliked him. Klind- 
worth must have been close upon eighty when I met him for the 
last time in life for I can hardly think that he survives still, 
though with one of his wonderful constitution and elastic tempera- 
ment it would not be wise to pronounce it an impossibility.* 
Why, the famous Chevreul, one of this century's most glorious 
princes of science, whom I knew more than half a century ago, is 
still to the fore, in good health, and with his intellectual powers 
unimpaired at ninety-eight. 

In Brunswick I also made the acquaintance of " honest " 
Wit-D6ring, as Marr used to call him. This man had been 
one of the loudest and intensest professors of ultra-democratic 
and demagogic principles, and one of the biggest guns at 
the Wartburg meeting in 1817. Ten years later, when I met 
him first, he was one of Metternich and Gentz's dirtiest tools, 
placed at Brunswick as confidential watcher and reporter of 
the Duke's sayings and doings. Marr, who was the soul of 
honour, and had the most stiff-backed independence of cha- 
racter, despised this man Wit, and made no secret of his feel- 
ings, which gave the good " Cabinet Spy " much concern, as 

* Politics have been my favourite hobby ever since my University 
days. I think I may honestly affirm that I have cultivated them to 
some purpose, if certain true forecasts of mine in some of the gravest 
political crises of the time may be permitted to pass in proof of the 
assertion. My more or less intimate connection with some of the occult 
agencies darkly at work in the intricate machinery of European state- 
craft and political wire-pulling for the last half century, have always 
ranked as a prime factor in my calculations and speculations in these 
matters. I trust I shall soon have an opportunity afforded me to 
adduce documentary vouchers in support of this "bare" assertion, 
as some critics have not failed to dub it with perfect justice. It was 
certainly from no fault of mine that such vouchers have not been 
permitted to make their appearance in these " Reminiscences." 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 343 

he told me with tears in his eyes and sobs in his utterance, 
warmly protesting that, though appearances might certainly 
seem against him, he was still faithfully serving the " good 
cause." He profusely professed the sincerest admiration for 
Marr ; but I think he would gladly have done him the worst 
injury in his power, had he but dared. However, the great 
actor stood too high in the Duke's consideration, and was looked 
upon with a favourable eye also by another important personage 
employed in the same noble Austrian Chancellery service in 
which Wit was picking up an "honest" crumb the Countess 
Gortz-Wrisberg, nee Staff, to wit, a highly accomplished lady 
intriguer, who, though rather considerably sur le retour, retained 
still a great penchant for handsome and clever young men. 

When Marr took me with him to the theatre, to present me 
to the great Dr. Klingemann, his Serene Highness walked un- 
expectedly in at rehearsal, to the poor nervous director's terror, 
as the Duke was but too likely to resent the intrusion of a 
stranger behind the scenes of his very own theatre. Marr, 
however, who was of sterner stuff, and would, I verily believe, 
have troubled his mind very little about the displeasure of a 
whole roomful of Serene Highnesses, boldly took the bull by 
the horns, and coolly presented me to the Duke as a young 
stage-struck friend. 

What a handsome fellow Charles of Brunswick was in those 
days ! with his rather tallish, well-shaped figure, slightly raised 
by the Louis Quatorze heeled elegant boots which he wore on 
his small feet, his classically regular features, finely chiselled 
nose, small mouth, luminous blue eyes, and rich dark hair. He 
was, moreover, singularly gracious on this occasion yet, strange 
to say, I felt repelled rather than attracted. There was no real 
warmth in those bright orbs of his, and I, yea even I, young and 
inexperienced though I was, and but little skilled yet in reading 
men's faces, saw the cool, contemptuous, cynical sneer peeping 
through the cold, glittering smile with which he was pleased to 
graciously accept Marr's explanation of my presence there. 

" Ill-starred prince," said Marr to me after. " A devilishly 
devised and but too successfully carried out system of training 
ad hoc has morally destroyed him. He has had to suffer bitterly 
for his relationship to Queen Caroline of England. George IV., 
Cumberland, and Cambridge have worked their ill-will upon 
him. The tools to whom his ' education ' was entrusted Lin- 
siugen and Eigener have ruthlessly, with malice prepense, 
trampled out of him all the good grain, leaving naught but 
what is mad or bad. I pity him deeply." And so did I some 
seventeen years after, when Father Lacordaire had perverted his 



344 EEMINISCENCES OF 

daughter to Eomanism of course, ad major em Dei gloriam. 
She was the only human being whom he really loved, and she 
was torn from his heart by this " worthy " priest, who died in 
the odour of sanctity ! A queer world we live in, my masters ! 
Yes, she was torn from his heart, and thus was snapped the last 
link that bound him to aught human. Not that it was not a just 
retribution for his cruel treatment of his unhappy English wife, 
the mother of this child, whom he had married morganatically 
in England, but whom he ruthlessly repudiated, for no other 
earthly reason but that, with his mean disposition, he found her 
an over-expensive luxury, and that in his mad "sovereignty" 
conceit he deemed himself above all law, human and divine. 

Many years after this, our first casual meeting behind the 
scenes of the Brunswick Court Theatre, I came once more quite 
as casually into contact with Duke Charles. He was then living 
in I^ryanston Square. It was at the time when two unmitigated 
villains, the proprietors of the Satirist and the Age, were making 
his life in London a very hell to him. These vile wretches 
scrupled not to drag the deposed and exiled Prince's intimates, 
friends, and acquaintances male and female alike through the 
mud and mire of their nauseous publications. I took an indignant 
interest in the matter, and volunteered to aid the deeply-wronged 
man in bringing these scamps to book. 

After their ignominious overthrow, one of the two Barnard 
Gregory, of the Satirist resolved to forswear libelling and black- 
mailing, and to gain a clean, decent living by the exercise of his 
undoubted theatrical talents. The Duke, still thirsting for ven- 
geance, organised an equally disgraceful plot to prevent the 
repentant sinner's successful appearance on the boards at Green- 
wich, in the first instance, afterwards at the Strand Theatre in 
London. His Highness, deeming me a mere literary hack, had 
the sovereign insolence to send his emancipated groom Andlaui 
to me, to engage my services to hoot Barnard Gregory ofi the- 
stage whenever or wherever he might essay to perform. I trust 
1 need not record here my answer to this insulting, vile proposal. 

In 1828 I went to Hamburg on a visit to Schmidt, to see the 
new theatre under his management. Here I once more met 
Henry Marr, who starred it for a few nights in his new imper- 
sonation of Eichard III., one of the most finished performances 
it has ever been my good fortune to behold on any stage; in 
fact, equalled only by his Mephistopheles, in which part I saw 
him the year after at Brunswick, in Goethe's " Faust," and in 
which he was truly sublime. 









AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 345 

Dear, good Henry Marr ! He also has long since been gathered! 
to the great host. He died some twelve years ago, after a 
thoroughly worthy, laborious, and most useful and beneficial 
life, extending over seventy-five years, from birth to death. 

In 1838 I saw one of the dramatic glories of the empire 
Mademoiselle George. It was at Lyons, in " Marie Tudor." It 
was at her annual Lyons benefit. She acted splendidly, and she 
looked wondrously young and charming. Indeed, to me she 
seemed still to have le braa si dodu, et la jambe bien faite of the 
days of her early prime, when emperors and kings disdained not 
to worship at her shrine. Yet in 1838 she must have had her 
premiere, seconde, et troisitme jeunesse considerably behind her- 
It was many years after that I met this once bright star of the 
Theatre Francais again. I think I remember it was at the Opera- 
in Paris, where Louis Napoleon had graciously bestowed upon 
the great Bonaparte's whilom mistress the keepership of the 
umbrellas, etc. Lord, we know what we are, but know not 
what we may be. 

Dejazct was another French actress whom I knew for many 
long years. I saw her first, over and over again, in 1830-1833, 
when she was the sprightliest and most spirited dearest little 
sprite that ever delighted an audience. In 1859, that great patron 
of dramatic art in petticoats, Achille Fould, generously gave her 
a concession to manage a boulevard theatre of her own, and in her 
own name the Theatre Dejazet. I cannot say whether she was 
as successful as a manageress as she was as a dramatic artist. 

In 1865 she delighted many thousands, including myself, by 
her bewitching performances in several of Sardou's plays. I 
saw her some years after in London ; but, alas ! quantum mutata 
ab Hid. Though even then she still charmed all who had never 
seen her in her prime, and amazed all who had ever witnessed her 
earlier triumphs. 

I had, with admiring awe, heard la terribile Pasta in the zenith 
of her fame. Many long years after Lumley, in his desperate 
efforts to keep open Her Majesty's in the Hay market, brought 
what had once been the greatest of all singers before a British 
audience. It was almost a cruel deed. I could have cried over 
the grand old ruin.- Ay, there was the scent still faintly clinging 
to it, indeed, but the vase was broken. 

It was well-nigh the same with poor Dejazet. All the dramatic 
genius was there, but the dramatic power was gone. Dejazet 
died in December, 1875. She must have been an octogenarian 



346 REMINISCENCES OF 

then ; yet a few brief months before she had still been nobly to 
the fore at a benefit performance ! 

The exercise of the dramatic art seems to be favourable to 
longevity. In England we have glorious instances of this such 
as dear old Mrs. Glover, who died almost in harness ; clever Mrs. 
Frank Matthews, one of the very best and most natural actresses 
that ever -walked the boards. I remember her vividly, to the 
present hour, in the " Eogues of Paris," for instance, with her 
inimitable, "My card, sir; door-keys given, and no questions 
asked." Grand Mrs. Keeley, who, I think, is still to the fore. 
The last time that I saw and heard her, with the liveliest pleasure, 
was at poor Buckstone's last benefit at Drury Lane, when Peter 
Burleyne was kind enough to give the Old Bohemian a seat in 
his box "Vous voyez bicn, mon ami Pierre, qu'un bienfait n'est 
jamais perdu" which interpreted meaneth " Never lose a chance, 
Peter, to give an old man a seat in your box at a benefit, it will 
be remembered after many days." Madame Vestris, in the 
" Bottle Imp," and in a crowd of other of her glorious perform- 
ances ; Marie Wilton, especially in her great " Little Treasure " 
days ; and St. Nisbett, of the rippling laughter, although moving 
in different and distinct grooves, would often remind me of 
sprightly Dejazet in her sprightliest moments.* 

It must have been in 1830 or 1831 that I saw the famous 
Mdlle. Monval (Mars). I saw her only once, as Elmire, in 
"Tartuffe." The great comedienne was then decidedly sur le 
retour. Yet I remember what a splendid performance it was, 
and what a glorious living impersonation of Moliere's conception 
of the part. 

Of Eachel I have already spoken in another section of these 
11 Eeminiscences." She was a wondrous tragedian. However, I 
must say, that somehow she succeeded but rarely in touching 
and stirring my sympathetic chords if the expression may be 
permitted to pass and I had a notion in my poor untutored 
mind that she was occasionally apt to descend to the stilts, in 
delivering Eacine's stilted lines. 

* But for lack of space, how I would love to revel in reminiscences 
of the truly artistic performances of these and many more excellent 
English actresses Miss Woolgar, who never spoiled a part; Miss 
Fortescne, who acted so charmingly in " The Chimes j " Miss Cooper, 
who used to enchant me, some forty years ago, as " Gwynneth Vaughan," 
etc. etc. 






AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 347 

I have applauded many comic, farce, and burlesque actors in 
my time, and I have had the pleasing advantage of knowing 
some of them more or less personally. Louis Devrient and Henry 
Marr, for instance, who were equally unapproachable in the 
opposite extremes of the dramatic chain ; Plock, a great German 
comic actor in the second, third, and fourth decennium of this 
century ; Helmerding, who, I think, is still delighting and con- 
vulsing the good Berliners; Alcide Toussez, one of the most 
comically quaint of the quaint comics, and his counterparts on 
the English stage, Compton and Keeley ; Buckstone, Wright, 
Harley, George Belmore, Jemmy Eogers, and a few more and, 
strange to say, perhaps I have in most of them found illustrated, 
more or less, the truth of the old saying that tears and laughter 
are most nearly akin. 

I have seen the famous Louis Devrient shed abundant tears 
immediately after his most comic performances ; but then, there 
may have been in these tears some, at least, of the old pine-apple 
that had served to keep him up to the mark. I had occasion to 
know that Henry Marr was liable to fits of the " blues." Plock, 
who was the very incarnation of roaring fun and extravagant 
humour, had a deep under-current of saddest melancholy in him. 
I have a notion also, that Liston, the creator of " Paul Pry," was 
given to gloom. I think he was a confirmed hypochondriac, and 
Ms intense comicalness, in a great measure at least, was based 
upon the preternaturally sad and solemn way in which he was 
funny. Thus, when in the " Illustrious Stranger," if I remember 
aright, he looked up to the " gods " with that lachrymose long- 
nosed solemn mug of his, uttering his melancholy " I see nothing 
to laugh at," no one with a midriff in him could resist shaking 
And roaring : nor when, in " Paul Pry," he protested, with evident 
perfect good faith, " that he would never, no never, do a good- 
natured thing again." Thus, in him also it was the Jean qui pleure 
element that made the public laugh. 

Many years ago a comic actor of the subtlest humour was 
nightly making the sides of the playgoers in the gay city of 
Vienna "shake and split with boisterous mirth and inextinguish- 
able laughter. His name, if I misremember not, was Eeimund. 

One day there called upon Dr. Frank, the famous Vienna 
physician, a sad-faced man, to ask the great healer's counsel. 
Melancholy had claimed him for her own, he bitterly complained ; 
all and everything looked to him dark and gloomy; his life was 
naught but misery and suffering, and there was not to be found 
in the wide world the thing that might coax even a transient 
smile to his wan cheeks. 



348 REMINISCENCES OF 

" Tut, tut, man," cried the Doctor, cheerfully, " you must go 
and see our prince of comics, Eeimund, and if after that you ever 
come here again to tell me that you cannot get up a smile, I will 
show you as an unnatural curiosity at a florin a head, and make a 
fortune out of you. Not smile, indeed ! Why, my dear sir, you 
cannot help roaring with laughter, yea, literally exploding with 
it, but to look at him ! " The consultant heaved a deep sigh, and 
gazing mournfully on the physician, said, in slow, measured 
accents : " Dr. Frank, I am Eeimund ! " Then, with a melancholy 
shake of the head, he turned him, and went away. 

Barely two months after, the easy-going pococurante, happy 
philosophy of the gay Viennese had a rude shock given to it. 
The wondrous laughter-compeller lay stark and stiff, laid low by 
his own hand. Yet, how intensely funny he had been in his 
last performance, only a few brief evenings before funny ! ay, 
funny ! with brain corroded and heart-strings cracking, and the 
iron entering deeper and deeper into his soul. 



I have seen poor dear George Honey, surely one of the 
funniest and quaintest actors, in fits of deep despondency ; in his 
case, however, there may have been reasons for it in his domes- 
ticity. We were opposite neighbours at one time, and passed 
many pleasant hours together. He was a right good fellow, and 
a most amusing companion, full of the raciest dry humour. He 
was rather given to sturdy independence ; at least, he had none of 
the toadying and tuft-hunting element in his composition. On 
one occasion he happened to preside over the Saturday's Club 
dinner, when a noble peer of the realm who had been elected a 
member years before succeeding to the family title and estates, 
upon the old qualification of being a worker in literature, and a 
clubable fellow was informed by a liveried servant that his lord- 
ship's carriage was at the door. George roundly took the noble 
earl to task, telling him this sort of thing would not do there, 
and, although a bill of indemnity would be passed for this once, 
he, the Chairman, trusted it would never happen again. 

One of Honey's little girls, then between three and four, used 
to amuse me hugely. She would run over to my place five or 
six times a day in quest of a " pot of beer," which she would 
honestly endeavour to earn by singing, with a preternaturally 
solemn face : 

Ub an down the City Woad, 

In and out the Eagle, 

That the way the money go : 

Bob go the wee-ee-ee-sle. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 349 

She always got her " pot of beer," in the form of sherbet or 
cream of tartar lemonade. Anything in the guise of drink was 
to her a " pot of beer." 

Great Sir William Don, also, who was as intensely fanny in 
"Cousin Joe" as little Buckstone himself, and simply unap- 
proachable as the long waiter at Greenwich, had much melan- 
choly in his composition. Here again, however, there was 
intelligible cause for a sombre view of life. Don was an accom- 
plished gentleman, an excellent actor, and in many respects a 
man of solid attainments. Well, he was not a bit proud of any 
of these advantages. His great boast was that he could retain 
separate in his mouth a glass of wine and a glass of water, and 
I gained his warm friendship, I verily believe, simply by asking 
him on every available occasion to perform this feat. Man is a 
queer animal. 

Then there was Edward Wright, the king of comedy, farce, 
and burlesque ; " Jolly Ned," as Eobert Brough used to call him. 
whose very face was a fortune in itself to a comic actor. Every 
surviving middle-aged playgoer must remember him with heart- 
felt gratitude for the many hearty laughs he made every one 
enjoy who ever had the happy privilege to " drink him in with 
eye and ear." Even with one to succeed him so excelling in every 
line and shade of the via comica as J. L. Toole, the remembrance 
of his Muster Grinnidge will always stand out in boldest relief, 
It is really not too much to say that his inimitable performance 
of the part contributed most materially to clothe the " Green 
Bushes " with such wondrously enduring verdure. Even as I am 
penning these lines I see his unapproachable Paul Pry rise before 
me in the mirror of my mental vision, his marvellous Marmaduke 
Magog, Tittlebat Titmouse, his Dick Swiveller, his Bill Lackaday 
the Foundling, and ever so many more of his humorously 
grotesque characterisations. 

I have seen many, many actors in the course of my long 
career, and a great many of them on the best terms with their 
audience. But I never, never met with one who could safely 
venture to take such astonishing liberties with the public 
as Edward Wright habitually did, and was erer ready and willing 
to do. 

I remember, on one occasion when Benjamin Webster was 
" negotiating " for a new play with the Brothers Brough, Robert 
had devised a somewhat risky situation for Wright, which 
Webster was of opinion the latter would certainly decline to 



350 REMINISCENCES OF 

run the risk of. Eobert, who knew his Ned, bet Webster a 
dinner that the great Adelphi comic would not shrink from even 
a more " risky " situation if he could only see his way clear to a 
great hit. 

Difficile est communia proprie dicere. Some stories have to be 
delicately handled in the telling. It would hardly do for me 
here to state what " dramatic " situation Brough suggested to 
"Wright ; I can only say that it rather staggered even that bold 
and experienced old stager. " Do you think the B. P. will stand 
that ? " he dubiously queried. " You must know best, whether 
and how it may be done," was Kobert's reply. Wright took 
time to consider. My philosophical master, Hegel, though not a. 
Kant or a Schopenhauer, taught me at least how to let things be 
inferred by illustration and implication. In Balzac's Contes 
Drolatiques in " Les Joyeulsetes du Koy Louis Onze," there is a 
broadly farcical tale in which Olivier le Daim, Tristan 1'Hermite, 
and the ill-fated Cardinal Balue, are made to figure prominently ; 
the King having enjoyed to the full the " fun and frolic " his 
coarse cruel mind could derive from pain and suffering wantonly 
inflicted upon others, gives his royal appreciative verdict on the 
performance thus : "La farce etait bonne, mais diablement orde." 
The dramatic situation suggested, jocularly and tentatively, by 
Brongh to Wright might have been characterised somewhat 
after the same fashion. Next day the immortal Ned told Kobert 
lie thought he saw his way to do it. Webster did not though, 
but he honourably acquitted his wager. 

Then there was Muster Grinnidge's man Jack Gong, dear 
Paul Bedford, Wright's and his glorious successor's in the comic 
championship of England, J. L. Toole's fidus Achates and most 
efficient aide-de-camp. 

I knew great Paul first in the halcyon days of his resonant 
" Jolly Nose " fame, when he was nightly delighting enthusiastic 
audiences in the enchanted gardens of Vauxhall. A few brief 
weeks before he died I had to send him a case of champagne, by 
special request of Charles Millward, then absent from London, 
who thus shed a last few friendly rays upon the dark passage to 
the mysterious stage beyond, to which the veteran actor was soon 
after summoned by the inexorable call-boy, Death. 

Paul was of a most kindly nature, an amusing companion, and 
a sweet singer. At our Club dinners, in the glorious olden days, 
when we feasted still luxuriously at half-a-crown per head, he 
would often charm us with his dulcet notes. " Willie brewed a 
peck o' maut " was his favourite song. He used to profess ardent 
admiration for Queen Elizabeth, until he found it stated in Agnes 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 351 

Strickland's life of Her Majesty that she had once upon a time 
borrowed two hundred pounds of the Mayor of Worcester, which 
loan had never been repaid. This shocked his moral sense ; he 
indignantly asked what would the world have said if a poor 
play-actor had been guilty of such mean dishonesty. 

One of the most irresistibly droll actors I ever met anywhere 
was Tyrone Power, who was so unhappily lost in the ill-starred 
President, on her voyage to England, about forty-one years ago. 
He was the very incarnation of the richest Irish fun, wit, and 
humour. In pieces like the " Irish Lion," the " Irish Tutor," the 
" Irish Ambassador," and others of the kind, he was simply un- 
approachable. I saw him for the last time on the eve of his 
setting out on his fatal trip across the Atlantic, and I was among 
the most eager and anxious to rush nearly every hour of the day 
to the Times office, and every night to the Haymarket, to learn 
had any news reached them of the missing vessel. Alas ! " how 
that brave ship perished, none knew save Him on high," and it 
has truly grown " an old man's story " now. 

I have since then seen several remarkably clever Irish actors, 
but never again the like of Power -that is to say, on the stage. 
For in private life I indeed once met a gentleman whom Nature 
had bountifully gifted with something like the same rich vein of 
humour and about the same exuberant fatness of fun. He was 
an Irish physician, a T. C. D. graduate, who was struggling in 
vain to work his way into a paying medical practice in England. 
Doctor Edmund Kelly, when in the humour, would imitate Power 
to perfection in voice, action, and facial expression. Only he 
was but rarely in the humour, as he looked upon his histrionic 
"gift" as a very sorry attainment in a "member of a learned 
profession." I was most intimate with him ; he lived for many 
months with me, when that " learned profession " had failed in 
the end even to put a crust of bread into his mouth. I once 
" stratagemically " succeeded, as dear Gus Mayhew used to have 
it, in getting him to give a sample of his power to imitate Power 
before a leading London manager in the very best position to- 
estimate its force of drawing the great British public Haymarkefc 
way. An offer there and then of a three years' engagement at 
twenty pounds a week was the result, only to be indignantly 
rejected as an insult almost to the doctor's professional dignity. 
Indeed, I was taken severely to task afterwards for having made 
the attempt. Welt, my friend continued to vegetate on for some- 
thing like two years more, when he accepted an offer at last to 
proceed to Australia as surgeon to a large Government emigrant 
ship. This was in December, 1848. In golden Australia he 



352 REMINISCENCES OF 

succeeded after all. When I heard last from him he was in 
lucrative practice at Kynaston, Victoria, where he held the official 
position of coroner. 

I was most intimate for many years with a cousin of this 
gentleman, Dr. Hubert Kelly, whose gifts, however, lay not the 
histrionic way, but in the healing direction. He was established 
at Pinner, but his fame and practice extended far beyond the 
narrow limits of that small Middlesex village township and 
deservedly so. I rarely in the course of my experience have met 
with so perfect a specimen of the country surgeon as he ought to 
be skilful, experienced, cool and collected, and ready for any 
emergency. He was a charming companion, too. I vividly 
remember a most pleasant jaunt we had together, in 1845, to 
Southampton, Portsmouth, and the Isle of Wight. We had 
a patient of his with us, who was placed with' the Doctor 
by ffhe Court of Chancery. He was an unhappy gentleman, 
who having been brought up strictly and religiously by his 
parents, had after their death suddenly found himself free from 
restraint, with 2,000 a year clear. It would seem to be a by 
no means uncommon thing to have a bee in one's bonnet. This 
gentleman's particular bee belonged to the religious humming 
species : he thought it incumbent upon him to provide for the 
spiritual destitution in a certain part of London, by building and 
endowing a church at a cost of 8,000. His wife, a most charming 
young lady, thinking, most likely, how much better this large 
sum might be spent on millinery to deck her graceful person, 
quietly got a commission de lunatico so her husband was, by a 
most sapient jury, found of unsound mind in monetary matters, 
and snugly put away with Dr. Kelly, with 800 a year settled 
upon him, the remaining 1,200 being handed over to the free 
management of the loving wife. I found him a remarkably sane, 
shrewd man eccentric, indeed, but by no means more so than 
most men, and rather 'cute and close in money matters. He 
showed a strong common sense when, being advised by me to try 
his chance in an appeal to Chancery for a reversal of the finding of 
the Commission, he told me it was not likely that he would be 
fool enough to enter upon so hopeless a contest. 

I took an absorbing interest in the case of Dyce Sombre, the 
eccentric son of an Indian princess, who having been found mad 
upon the evidence of a couple or so of " mad specialists," and 
stripped of his fortune and his liberty accordingly, strove 
manfully for long years to have justice done to him, but died, 
unfortunately, just when he was on the point of conquering at 
last. So Dr. Kelly's patient was wondrously wise in avoiding to 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 353 

court the same fate. Happy thought! Eccentric men should 
not marry. 

Dr. Hubert Kelly, who, as I have intimated already, was truly 
a thoroughly practical, rational physician, allowed his patient the 
utmost freedom of motion and action compatible with the strict 
orders and injuiiGtions of Chancery maybe even beyond. So 
the poor man's burthen was bearable only this was simply a 
slice of good luck for him : suppose he had fallen into the clutches 
of a "mad specialist?" then he would indeed have been un- 
happy, and might in time, most likely, have actually been driven 
out of his mind. Like so many other of my dearest friends, 
Dr. Hubert Kelly is long since " gone before." 

His widow, upon whose kind friendship I may say I pride 
myself, is a daughter of the late Mrs. Sherwood, the famous 
writer, the author of the " Life of Henry Martin," "Henry Milner," 
"Henry and His Bearer," "Mirabel," and other amusing and 
instructive works, which in the olden time I used to devour 
eagerly in the vernacular, or in translation. 

I have through life had a great liking and entertained the 
sincerest admiration for really clever and truly competent lady 
writers. Carlen and Marlitt, George Sand and George Eliot, 
rank equally high with me. I long entertained a platonic affec- 
tion for Delphine Gay, whom I never saw in my life, though I 
knew her husband, the great Emile de Girardin, pretty well. 
Mrs. Gore's novels were a source of great pleasure to me ; so 
were Mrs. Trollope's, the Brontes', Miss Braddon's, Miss Annie 
Thomas's, my old friend Benjamin Clayton's clever daughter's 
Miss Carey's, " Ouida's," Mrs. Eiddell's, and a long string of 
others. Miss Ann Porter's, Miss Austen's, and Maria Edgeworth's 
classic productions remain patterns to me to this present day. 

I positively revelled in Miss Kobinson's historic novels, more 
particularly "Whitefriars" and "Csesar Borgia;" and thereby 
hangs a small tale, which I think I had better give here, though 
it may be thought out of place in a special chapter on acting. I 
must humbly crave the kind reader's indulgence for my thus 
seemingly travelling still farther away from the subject more 
immediately before me. I am nighty in disposition, "to one 
thing constant never." No one can help one's peculiar nature. 
Besides, is not all the world but a stage ? and are not all men and 
women merely players ? 

In the olden times we had admitted to our set that used to 
meet at the White Hart Tavern, a tall old gentleman in a tall old 
dress suit, with a tall old chimney-pot, who went by the name of 
Robinson and by the reputation of the author of " Whitefriars. 1 

2 A 



354 REMINISCENCES OF 

We admired him accordingly. Halliday and self, more especially, 
positively reverenced him ; and when he talked mysteriously of 
the wondrous historic tales then still in gestation in his brain, 
which would " lick * Whitefriars ' into fits," we could barely 
refrain from falling on our knees to worship him. Literally, 
there was no end to the " libations " poured out to him, which he 
would graciously accept and freely imbibe with the calm dignity 
of one conscious of his worth. It so fell out that Halliday went 
one day to the Exhibition of the Academy, where he chanced to 
see a portrait of the "Author of 'Whitefriars/ " who turned out to 
be a lady. Well, we were fierce in our wrath. It was such a 
base deception ; but the old gentleman was equal to the occasion ; 
he contended that, the part being included in the whole, and he 
being the father of the author of " Whitefriars," he had not been 
guilty of any false pretence. Halliday took his revenge, however, 
by telling the story to the reading world in an amusing skit 
entitled " The Author of Blueblazes " (Whitefriars = Whiten 1 res : 
Blueblazes). 

Some time after this little episode the real author of 
"Whitefriars" had the most thankless of all thankless tasks 
thrust upon her to wit, the continuation and completion of a 
serial novel conceived and commenced by that great prince in the 
realm of fiction, J. F. Smith, the writer of " Stanfield Hall," 
"Amy Lawrence," "Woman and her Master," and a number of 
other most interesting and exceedingly well- written stories in the 
London Journal which at one time raised the circulation of that 
periodical to half a million, and gained it the honour of special 
mention in Parliament by Sir George Cornewall Lewis. Well, 
Smith was writing " Masks and Faces " in the Journal when he 
had a tiff with Stiff, the proprietor, needless to add that the 
teterrima causa of all bella woman, lovely woman was at the 
bottom of it. In fierce Olympian rage the great author sent in to 
the proprietor a concluding chapter, in which he skilfully 
managed to assemble the whole of his dramatis personcz on board 
a bark, which he incontinently sent to the bottom of the sea, thus 
bringing his story to a compulsory close ; and he went over, bag 
and baggage, to the rival camp of Cassell, Fetter, & Galpin. 
Thus it came to pass that Miss Robinson had to continue and 
complete " Masks and Faces," somewhat in the same fashion as 
Halliday once upon a time had to complete a serial tale in 
Household Words, left unfinished by the author, one of the most 
brilliant writers of the day. So Miss Robinson may be said not 
to have had to stand quite alone in this most undesirable branch 
of fictive literature. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 355 

Like her gifted mother, Mrs. Kelly has cultivated literature; 
several excellent works, with a moral and religious tendency, 
have flowed from her pen. She is not quite strictly orthodox : 
she loves to look upon God as an indulgent, forgiving father, 
rather than a stern inexorable judge ; and she actually 
professes her disbelief in the doctrine of Eternal Punishment 
a dreadful latitudinarian heresy, which I once heard a pious 
divine denounce as the thin wedge of atheism. Well I, for my 
part, must confess that the lady's heterodox latitudinariamsm 
liketh me ever so much better than the pious divine's narrow 
orthodoxy. 

To return, once more, finally, to the subject of great actors 
who occupy a prominent place in my reminiscences. 

The omne tulit punctum may, with perfect truth, be applied 
to J. L. Toole. He is equally great in pathos as in drollery. 
I saw Toole first, many years ago, at the Lyceum, in " Bel- 
phegor," as the excellent melodramatic actor Charles Dillon's 
most efficient aide-de-camp. Even to this day I chuckle with 
"reminiscent" laughter when I think of the intensely funny, 
yet thoroughly natural, way in which Toole seemed to give way 
to the clearly irrepressible, inward impulsion to move the drum- 
sticks. I have since then made it a point to see Toole whenever 
and wherever I can manage, and I must say his acting has never 
once yet disappointed me in any way or degree. I have not been 
able to see him of late years, as I have mostly been absent from 
London. I am proud to number Toole among my friends ; he is 
not only a true actor, but a true man, a lovable fellow, and a 
kind and helpful friend as, to my own knowledge, he has shown 
himself to many. 

Toole's whilom Siamese twin-brother on the comic stage, 
Lionel Brough, also is a born actor. I saw his first debut on 
the boards. It was some twenty-two years ago, at the Lyceum, 
in the Savage Club performance of the " Forty Thieves." He 
played the part of Ganem; and well indeed he did it, though 
at that time he was simply an amateur. I was happy in the 
possession of a veritable quadrilateral of fraternal friends in 
London the four brothers Brough to wit four towers of 
strength unto me. Alas ! three of them have long since been 
laid low by the universal destroyer. Lionel alone survives, and 
he is correspondingly dear to me. I have watched his theatrical 
career with the sincerest and warmest interest, and the utmost 
gratification at his success, and it is my heartfelt prayer that 
he may for many, many, many long years to come continue in 



356 REMINISCENCES OF 

health and strength, and ever grow in professional fame and 
prosperity. 

Another of my greatest favourites on the British stage, and 
an esteemed friend, is David James. Of him also I can con- 
scientiously aver that, to me, all his impersonations are unex- 
ceptionally excellent, and that often as I have witnessed his 
performances and I make it a point to see him whenever I can 
possibly manage I have invariably found him fully up to my 
rather 'exacting standard of unimpeachable character acting. 
The retired butterman in " Our Boys" afforded me one of the 
richest theatrical treats I ever enjoyed. It was in every way the 
closest attainable stage representation of the successful British 
trader such as we often find him in actual life vulgar, con- 
ceited, and ridiculous, no doubt, in talk and manners, yet with 
the sterling qualities of a true man in him. David James's 
Moses, in the "School for Scandal" in which I saw him at 
Buckstone's last benefit was, to my mind, a perfect gem of 
thoroughly well-conceived and admirably-executed impersona- 
tion. 

Many, many apparitions from the past are crowding on to 
the mirror of my memory, most of them dear friends who have 
long since been called off this world's stage : Tilbury, ill-fated 
Charles Young, Compton, Belmore, George Wild, Strickland, little 
Jemmy Kogers, Charles "Verner, Widdicombe, Alfred Wigan, Henry 
Montague, Sam Emery, Saker, 0. Smith, Frederick Yates, 
Maynard, little Wieland, Wilkinson, Munyard, Barrett, Saunders r 
Stuart, and ever so many more. Also some who happily are 
still full of life and hope : Stanislaus Calhaem, Horace Wigan r 
Billington, Neville, Eobert Soutar, Charles Collette, John S. 
Clarke, Philip Day, Hermann Yezin, and a host of others, of 
whom I would dearly love to speak at greater length but that 
the remaining space at my disposal here is growing alarmingly 
contracted. 

Theatricals, as I have said before, are a cherished hobby of 
mine, but I feel I must not risk riding this hobby to death. 
Still, I may crave indulgence for a few brief general remarks in 
conclusion. 

The English have nearly all over the world imputed to them, 
as a leading characteristic foible of theirs, excessive national 
conceit. They are held to believe that they are " first chop " in 
everything, and that no other people can pretend to come within 
measurable distance of their own superlative universal perfection. 
Now it seems to me this charge is barely deserved ; nay, it may 
justly be averred, on the contrary, that the English are almost 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 357 

over-much given to generously cede the palm in many matters to 
other nations, who may, indeed, be their equals in such matters, 
but certainly not their superiors. 

I have, in the course of these reminiscences, repeatedly taken 
occasion to point out, for instance, how there are some things, at 
least in France, which they decidedly do not order better over 
there than here. 

It is the fashion now-a-days with English people who have 
seen plays and actors on the Continent, and equally with many 
moro who have simply witnessed on London boards the acting of 
foreign dramatic stars and the performances of French and 
German theatrical companies, to exalt to the skies the exquisite 
style and finish of the foreign drama, to the disparagement, of 
course, of the Bitish stage. 

The less uncompromising among these laudatores alieni 
generally restrict their praise and their strictures severally to 
the different regie, or management, respectively obtaining on 
continental and on English boards. 

Now I, for my own part, am simply a playgoer, certainly not 
a dramatic critic. So my judgment either way can carry no 
weight. Still I have an opinion of my own upon this matter, 
which I must humbly crave permission to put on record here. 

I have in the course of the last sixty years or so witnessed a 
great number and variety of dramatic performances in divers 
parts of Europe, and I have seen some few at least of the greatest 
actors of the century German, French, Italian, and English. I 
think I may venture to say that I am pretty free from national 
bias and prejudice. Well, I must say that, in my humble opinion, 
English acting can fully hold its own in the world's dramatic 
competition, and certainly need not dread disparaging comparison 
with the continental branch of this noble art. 

To give a few instances at random, by way of illustration. 
Macready, Gustavus Vaughan Brooke, Wallack, Phelps, Henry 
Irving, Charles Warner, and many more whom 1 could name, 
would have achieved high fame on any continental stage. Charles 
Kean, with all his shortcomings, and however inferior to his 
illustrious father, was still a great actor in the fullest sense of 
the term. Could any continental company have shown a Bottom, 
a Sir Pertinax Mac Sycophant, a Manfred, a King James superior 
to Phelps's glorious embodiment of these characters P It would 
have taken a very clever French or German artist to beat Robert 
Keeley in Sarah Gamp ; Frank Matthews in Pecksniff ; Compton 
in Dominie Sampson; Sothern in Dundreary. Lady Theodore 
Martin's Pauline Deschapelles could not well have been surpassed 
in delicacy of conception and finish of execution on any con- 



358 REMINISCENCES OF 

tinental stage. I have heard many leading French and German 
actresses laugh their level best, yet methinks I never heard any 
of them outdo the musical ripple of St. Nisbett. Can there be 
found anywhere a more delightful sprite, half Ariel, half Puck, 
and altogether " will-o'-the wisp " than bewitching Ellen Farren ? 

I have seen Perlet, one of the best French comedians, in many 
of his best parts, among others in " L'Art de Conspirer," and I 
was always enchanted with the marvellous finish and polish of 
his acting. Yet when I afterwards saw William Farren, senior, 
in " The Minister and the Mercer " the English adaptation of 
" L'Art de Conspirer " I should have been helplessly puzzled to 
which of the two great artists to give the palm, had the task to 
choose between the two been put upon me. And Farren's Sir 
Peter Teazle, Sir Anthony Absolute, Old Eapid, and that grandest 
conception, Grandfather Whitehead I take it that few of the 
best continental actors could have equalled the great English 
comedian in these parts, whilst surely none could have surpassed 
him. 

Lemaifcre, Lafont, Arnot, were splendid French actors. Yet 
Charles Mathews performed their greatest and most reputed parts, 
transferred and adapted to the English stage, at least to equal per- 
fection. Nay, he went over to Paris, to give the critical playgoers 
there convincing proof of his wondrous command over his art 
and over their own vernacular; and he gained enthusiastic 
applause night after night. 

It may be conceded that the stage management of English 
playhouses is not always up to the general standard of French 
and German regie. There is occasionally a lack of harmonious 
blending in English performances, calculated to impair the 
dramatic effect. Still, even in this respect, the fault-finding is 
not always legitimate. 

Disapproving critics should not base their strictures upon such 
very exceptionally high standards as the company of the Theatre 
Fran9ais or the Duke of Meiningen. There are few theatres, 
indeed, to be found anywhere able to achieve such perfection of 
general and personal dramatic mechanism, if the expression may 
be permitted to pass, as these corps d' elite exhibit. And, after 
all, the English stage also can boast of some excellent stage 
managers. There were the brothers Wigan, for instance Alfred 
and Horace,* and Mrs. Alfred Wigan ; Mr. Frederick Yates and 

* This excellent actor, whom I gladly number among my old friends, 

and whose wondrous impersonation of the detective in the "Ticket of 

> Man, at the Olympic, many years ago, ranks with my most 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 359 

his talented wife; Edward Stirling, of Drury Lane; and there 
are the Bancrofts, Eobert Soutar, and several more, who all of 
them would have been, or would be, equally great on the most 
exacting continental stage. 

To my mind, nothing anywhere has ever yet excelled the 
harmonious ensemble of Haymarket performances, such as the 
" Lady of Lyons," for instance, "Money," " The Love Chase," and 
other high-class plays in the olden days when Macready, Charles 
Kean, Strickland, Webster, Wrench, Farren, David Rees, Buck- 
stone, Charles Mathews, Mrs. Glover, Miss Helen Faucit, Miss 
Priscilla Horton, Mrs. Nisbett, Mrs. Charles Kean, Mrs. Stirling, 
and many others, were still to the fore in the dramatic world. 

Was there ever seen, before or since, such a perfect piece of 
concerted acting as " Little Nell " at the Adelphi, with Frederick 
Yates as Quilp, Mrs. Yates as Mrs. Quilp, dear clever Mrs. Keeley 
as the heroine, Wilkinson as Kit, Wright as Dick Swiveller, 
Wieland as the boy Scott, and all other parts filled as efficiently 
in every way ? or " Ten Thousand a Year," at the same place ? or 
the series of Robertsonian plays at the Prince of Wales's ? or the 
never-to-be-forgotten Chuzzlewit-Pecksniffean performance on 
the boards of the Lyceum, with Frank Matthews' lively embodi- 
ment of the veritable Pecksniff as drawn by Dickens, Bob Keeley 
as Sarah Gamp, Mrs. Keeley as Young Bailey, Meadows as Tom 
Pinch, etc. etc. ? 

I inscribe these reminiscences to Mr. Octavian Blewitt, the 
noble secretary to the noble Royal Literary Fund. But for that 
glorious institution, and the liberal aid so generously extended to 
me in the last six years by its committee, on more than one 
occasion, in my direst need, this book, in all likelihood, would 
never have been written as the hand which traces these words 
would long ere this have been cold and stiff in death. 

I trust I need not fear that anyone who knows me will impute 
it to the pride that would ape humility, when I thus openly express 
my heartfelt deep gratitude to the noblemen and gentlemen of 
the several committees that have deemed my appeal worthy of 
favourable consideration, and to the large-hearted secretary who 
has always exerted himself so warmly and sympathetically on my 
behalf. Was not the brilliant author of "Le Ge*nie du Chris- 
tianisme" generously assisted in his need by the same noble 
Fund? And did he not proudly acknowledge his obligation? 
Why not I then?" 

pleasant theatrical reminiscences, is still up and doing, I am happy 
to find. 



360 REMINISCENCES OF 

To the secretary personally, I owe a still deeper debt of 
gratitude. It is to Mr. Octavian Blewitt's spontaneous, un- 
solicited initiative, that I am indebted for the kind introduction 
of my name to Her Majesty's most gracious notice, which 
auspiciously led to my admission to the Charterhouse, upon 
nomination by the august lady, whom may the Almighty Dis- 
penser of events long, long preserve in health and happiness ! 

The Charterhouse is indeed a noble institution, and I would 
dearly have loved to pass the short balance of my life in its quiet 
shades. It has been ordained otherwise. When a man has lived 
close upon fifteen lustres, the joints of life have grown stiff in 
him, figuratively speaking, and he finds it very, very difficult to 
abandon or change old cherished habits. Still I might have 
succeeded in time in getting used to run in the new groove, but 
that grievous, well-nigh lethal illness absolutely compelled me to 
relinquish my residential position in the Charterhouse, and to 
apply for an out-pension, which the Governors of that most 
beneficent institution have been indulgently pleased to grant me. 

I have from childhood been most susceptible of derange- 
ment of the digestive function; ever since my fearful illness 
in Algiers, some forty-eight years ago, I have had to be careful 
in the choice, preparation, and taking of my food ; and, as a rule, 
I have been my own cook wherever practicable, and have taken 
my time over my meals. My dear friend, James Lowe, be- 
stowed upon me, years ago, the nickname of " Slowchaw," and 
the older I was growing, and the faster my grinders were going, 
leaving me naught in the end but a few reminiscential stumps, 
the more I came to practically deserve the appellation. 

It may be easily conceived, then, that the half -hour for dinner 
given at the Charterhouse, was not half time enough for me. 
The natural consequences of my attempt to force my stomach 
against Nature made themselves sadly felt only too soon. Still, 
I persevered, acting upon a most foolish proverb, which tells 
us that where there is a will there is a way. In the Brother 
Brough's " Emendations of British Proverbs," this most untrue 
saying was changed to " wills are but seldom ways." I, for one, 
found that with the very best will on my part I failed most 
signally to force my stomach to see its way to the reception of 
qualitatively and quantitatively unaccustomed fare within an 
unusually limited period of time. 

"Why dwell upon this ? In brief, my constitution obstinately 
persisted in declining to take anyhow to the sudden change in 
my habits ; my health was giving way more and more, and the 
natural brightness and cheerfulness of my temper and disposi- 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 361 

tion got clouded over with deep and broad shades of melancholy 
broodings. 

It was in February, 1880, some six months after I had come 
into residence in the Charterhouse. 



" I tell you what it is, old boy," said my friend O'Rourke * to 
me one day, "you look precious white about the gills. This 
sudden somewhat violent revolution in your mode of living does 
not seem to agree with you. You had better take a run down to 
the sea for change of air." 

" What ! in this blessed month of February ? How absurd ! " 
I cried. " Why, people would think me mad as a March hare." 

" Never you mind how absurd, or what people may think,'' 
retorted O'Rourke stoutly. "You do as I tell you, and I'll 
warrant you will soon have reason to thank me for my advice, 
which is solely prompted by my warm interest in you. You 
must surely see that I cannot possibly have a selfish motive in 
this." 

Now, I must say this of my friend O'Rourke, there breathes 
not a more unselfish man except, indeed, in money matters, or 
where his personal feelings or interests are, however remotely, 
concerned. And what, indeed, could it matter to him whether 
I stayed in London or went to the seaside ? 

So, as I have reason to consider O'Rourke rather an authority 
on questions of health, and as the advice proffered by him 
seemed disinterested, I began to look upon the suggestion as 
not quite so outrageously absurd as it had struck me at the 
first blush. 

" But where would you advise me to go to ? " I asked there- 
upon, somewhat more deferentially. 

"To Birchington, man, to Birchington !" exclaimed O'Rourke, 
enthusiastically. 

" Birchington P " I queried, in some perplexity. " Where is 
that to be found on the map," for I am ashamed to confess I 
could not just then call to mind ever having seen or heard the 
name of the place before. 

* For divers valid reasons I am compelled to resort to a pseudonym 
here, which I have selected in affectionate remembrance of my departed 
friend, Edmund Falconer, whose true patronymic it was. It had to 
come to the fore with him in his periodical applications to the " Court." 
Lawrence was once asked how Falconer was getting on it was at a 
time of temporary depression " Ah," said he sadly, shaking his head, 
" I am awfully afraid his ' Falconer ' full moon is on the wane, and is 
fast going to change to its pristine ' O'Rourke ' newness again." 



362 REMINISCENCES OF 

"Not know Bircliingfcon !" cried O'Eourke. "You surprise 

A village called Birchington, famed for its ' Holla ' 
As the fishing-bank just in its front is for soles. 

Why, you must have passed it over and over again on your way 
to Margate." 

" Oh, is it the small shebeen village you mean, next on the line 
from Herne Bay ? " I queried, somewhat contemptuously, as a 
faint recollection dawned upon me that I had seen some such 
name written up somewhere on the road to Margate. 

" Shebeen village, indeed ! " cried O'Eourke, indignantly. 
" Birchington-on-Sea, as it is properly called, is a town, sir 
a town which, but for the lack of a harbour, might have been one 
of the Cinque Ports, just as much as any of the other five. And 
as a sanatorium, second to none, let me tell you, sir." 

" But," I ventured to ask diffidently and dubiously, " will this 
sanatorium suit my constitution at this inclement season of the 
year ? 

" Will it suit your constitution at this inclement season of 
the year ? " mimicked O'Eourke. " Of course it will. It is the 
very place for you, man, with your gout and rheumatism, your 
asthma, your dyspeptic fits to which you have so perversely 
taken since your transplantation to the Domus Carthusiana, as 
if, forsooth, you had not plenty of ailments in stock to satisfy the 
distempered craving of the veriest glutton of valetudinarianism 
your inveterate hippishness, your eternal colds, and your ever- 
lasting bronchitis and the inroads of old age." 

Now, this was merely a nasty, ill-natured sneer of O'Eourke's; 
for, with all the inveterate hippishness imputed to me, I never 
yet laid claim to anything like half these complaints ; and as for 
dyspeptic fits, why, I certainly had not taken to them perversely 
or otherwise they had been forced upon me, not by fast living, 
but by compulsory fast eating. 

" Birchington," O'Eourke continued, magisterially, " with its 
chalk cliffs, and its dry soil, and its genial breezes, and the 
splendid facilities for bathing on its sandy shore, and its charm- 
ing rural simplicity, and its enchanting primitive ways, and* its 

* My friend O'Bourke uses a great many " ands" in this apostrophe 
to me, which an eminent journalistic authority of comparatively recent 
date would in his purism of literary composition have felt impelled to 
qualify as tautology. A distinguished writer on the paper under the 
supreme guidance and control of said high and mighty authority, once 
upon a time introduced into a political article of his a quotation from 
Macaulay, which happened to abound in " ands." The high authority 
in question sternly called the writer to account for the " vile tautology/' 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 363- 

calm repose, will make a new man of you in no time, and give 
you a fresh lease of life, starting you with a solid capital of health 
more than sufficient to last you for ten years to come ; so you just 
shut up and go ! And, look you here, old fellow, by a most extra- 
ordinary coincidence, I am going to send Mrs. O'Rourke and the 
chits to this identical town of Birchington, and as I have to go to 
Liverpool on business, you may as well run down along with 
them, looking a little after the luggage and things in general,, 
you know. You will infinitely oblige Mrs. O'Eourke. What say 
you ? " 

What could I say P I felt that I was in for it, and could not 
well get out of it, there being a lady in the case ; though I must 
say I saw peep out a little too much of the disinterested O'Bourke's 
actuating motive to make it quite pleasant. 

So, two days after, down I went to Birchington with Mrs.. 
O'Rourke and family of three charming cherubs, and a servant. 
I am a confirmed old bachelor in every way, and it had never 
been my fate before then to travel with a family. It is but a two 
hours and a half ran by rail from Victoria to Birchington ; but I 
had quite enough of it. There were twenty -two separate parcels 
of luggage to be seen to to get labelled at Victoria, looked after 
at Faversham, and finally collected on the Birchington platform 
for railway porters are apt to be careless if not largely tipped. In 
short, no slave of the ring or of the lamp in Aladdin's wondrous 
tale was ever made such a wretched serf as I was to that cursed 
luggage. 

And when at last it was all done, apparently, and the twenty- 
two parcels had hibernice been safely housed in our new rural 
residence, it turned out that there were only twenty-one of them,, 
and that the most important a large hamper containing the 
family's provender for a week to come, with no end of table-cloths,, 
napkins, towels, etc. was not among them. 

So I was despatched there and then to the station, to bully 
the unlucky master, and peremptorily insist upon the immediate 
production of that hamper. As the poor man had not got it I 
made him telegraph at once in every direction. 

From that time forward for four days after I was made 
wretched by that blessed hamper. I was truly hampered by it, 
or rather by its persistent non-appearance, in all my intended 
movements in search of health, and in all other ways. Every 

and when the latter pleaded that it was a quotation from Macaulay, 
replied with superb disdain, " Mr. Maoanlay may consider himself a 
very great writer, sir, but he shall not write for this paper, sir, so long 
as I am directing it, sir." This may read like a clumsy invention, bat 
it happens to be true. 



.364 REMINISCENCES OF 

train that happened to stop at Birchington brought me to the 
little toy station, with the stereotyped inquiry : " Has the hamper 
come F " 

And as day after day passed without news of the missing 
parcel, Mrs. O'Eourke grew more and more wroth, goading me, 
the very mildest-tempered man alive, into unseemly vituperation 
of the L. C. & D. Company and everybody connected with it, 
especially the unhappy station-master, who, in the end, dreaded 
the very sight of me, and had a run for it the instant he saw me 
turn up the Station Eoad. The three cherubs and the female 
slavey were also despatched some five or six times a day to make 
-the life of that plagued official a torment unto him. 

He was forced to telegraph to Victoria and to Faversham, 
.and to Dover and to Calais, and to Paris and to Ostend, and to 
Brussels nay, even to Cologne all in vain. So he told us at 
last, in desperation, to make out our claim upon the Company for 
the value of the missing parcel. And I, upon the strength of 
some hazy recollection of having once seen a hamper somewhere, 
and upon the confident asseveration of one of the cherubs that 
she had seen the hamper taken out of the van at Faversham, was 
ready to make a solemn declaration that I had seen the missing 
hamper duly labelled at Victoria and turned out of the luggage- 
van at Faversham, and Heaven forgive me! to swear to the 
value of the contents which I had never even cast eyes on. But 
ce quefemme veut. 

Well, we were just about sending in our claim for compen- 
sation, made out by Mrs. O'Eourke in a fashion testifying equally 
to a splendidly retentive perhaps slightly inventive memory, 
and to a truly surprising faculty of valuation, and duly supported 
by me in every item when lo ! on the fifth evening after our 
arrival at Birchington, the unlucky hamper came down upon us 
like an avalanche, sent on by O'Eourke, who had found it snugly 
reposing on the landing in his own house upon his return from 
Liverpool. I must say I felt a happy relief. A load was lifted 
off my mind. The dread of laying the guilt of little short of 
deliberate perjury on my soul had happily vanished now into the 
comfortable domain of things that simply might have been. 

Of course I do not claim the gift of looking into other people's 
-souls and consciences, but I have a shrewd suspicion that the 
unexpected arrival of the hamper did not please Mrs. O'Eourke 
quite so much as it rejoiced me. Poor lady ! Her great mnemonic 
feat and her brilliant power of computing values by double-chalk 
entry went positively for nothing now. She might surely be 
pardoned, then, for looking upon herself as a woman most cruelly 
used. No wonder her disappointment was visited upon my 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 365- 

devoted head. I caught it hot and sharp and strong. " If a 
gentleman undertook to look after a lady's luggage, he surely 
ought to do it properly. There could be no excuse for laxity or 
negligence in such a case," I was told rather bluntly, and I found 
it no easy task to deprecate the lady's wrath. 

And there was another mauvais quart d'heure to pass. For 
had not the opportunity come now for the martyred station- 
master to bear down heavily upon his unconscionable tormentor ? 
So I went in fear and trembling to make the amende honorable to 
that most ill-used official. Luckily the man turned out to be a 
true Christian. He simply looked at me reprovingly, and point- 
ing the outstretched index of his right hand at me, said slowly 
and impressively : 

" And you were prepared to swear that you had seen this 
hamper labelled at Victoria, and taken out of the luggage-van at 
Faversham ! What do you think of yourself now hey ? " and,, 
without waiting to listen to my apologetic self-depreciation, he 
turned on his heels and slowly walked away, gravely shaking his- 
head. 

I was a free man, then, at last ; free from that hampering 
incubus, and I was permitted by gracious Mrs. O'Kourke to ga 
and look around and about me beyond the quarter of a mile 
distance separating our urbano-rural residence from the railway 
station, to which my explorative movements had up to this beea 
mainly limited. 

Now, when one goes to the sea, even in winter, it is but natural 
that one would like to see the sea. So on the sixth morning after 
our arrival at Birchington I set out for the " sands ; " for I had 
been told that the coast at Birchington was arenaceous, just the 
same as at Margate. The said sands are about half a mile from 
the "town," as the Birchingtonians will, with true Kentish 
sturdiness, persist in dubbing their little village. Some of the 
more ardent local patriots even call it a seaport, which certainly 
it might be, only it is not, albeit in most other respects a most 
excellent place, as I found in due course of time ; and as a marine 
health resort, indeed second to none. 

On this, and on many succeeding days, I perambulated the 
Birchington shore from the bay sea-wall to Westgate, a stretch 
of above two miles of smooth sandy expanse, intersected here and 
there, close to the coast, by patches of chalk, stones, and pebbly 
shingle, yet altogether an " illigant sthrand for ladies to bathe in 
summer." 

The Birchington sands present, indeed, splendid facilities for 
bathing. It must be conceded, also, that the ways of the little 
place are enchantingly primitive. There are certain decayed 



366 REMINISCENCES OF 

ports on the Kentish coast where the number of bathing machines 
reaches actually up to three, and even four, which, however, are 
only rarely in simultaneous use at the very height of the season, 
when as many as an entire half-a-dozen families may happen to 
be down at a time. 

Now Birchington, with an influx now and then of some forty 
or fifty families occasionally, many of them belonging to the 
world of fashion, with a pretty large sprinkling of carriage people 
among them, sports not a solitary bathing box. Nature has 
generously provided more comfortable and more economical 
tiring-rooms, in the shape of a number of caves in the cliffs 
lining the shore. Some of these caves are pretty deep, others 
are more shallow. By tacit agreement) the latter are left to the 
gentlemen bathers, while the deeper ones are reserved for the 
exclusive use of the ladies. Sheets or blankets, or a number of 
newspapers artistically pinned together, secure the privacy of 
these improvised apartments, whose temporary tenants have no 
rent to pay. 

Birchington most fully shares in that glorious eastern blast 
for which the Kentish coast would seem to have secured a 
special patent of its own. O'Eourke had boasted of " genial 
breezes " among the most charming attractions of Birchington. 
Well, my personal experience of the place soon proved this to be 
a most deplorable abuse of language. I have had occasion to 
mention somewhere in the course of these " Reminiscences " 
how my dear departed friend Jacobsen, known in Bohemia 
Londinensis as the witty Dane of Westminster, used to call the 
"genial climb "the ascent of one hundred and seventeen steps 
leading to our lofty roost when we were in Paris together in 1867. 
Upon something like the same principle, the fierce blowers on the 
Kentish coast might be qualified as "genial breezes." I can 
conscientiously aver that during my stay in the place I hardly 
ever knew two days in succession to pass without some gale or 
other eastern or western, generally spiced with a stiff northern 
blast blowing gaily through the greater part of the day; occa- 
sionally for a long spell of several days and nights running. But 
I must add, in homage to truth, that, whether owing to the 
dryness of the soil, or to whatever more occult sanitary influence 
the very fiercest gale at Birchington never in any way injuriously 
affected me. At Brighton, I always suffer from distressing 
attacks of dyspnoea, and my bronchitis affectionately sticks to me 
in all weathers. At Birchington, I found I could breathe freely 
in the fiercest gale. In London, a wetting, or a walk through 
the mud, is always safe to land me in rheumatic rackings or in 
.gouty fits. At Birchington, neither the very heaviest walk over 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 367 

the wet sands, nor the most thorough soaking, ever seemed to 
have power to hurt me ; or, for the matter of that, any of the 
many invalids I met who had come in search of health to this 
truly glorious sanatorium. 

When I went back to London I really felt as a new-born man. 
But, alas ! I had to face once more the same adverse conditions 
as before my trip to Birchington. And, most unhappily, this 
time a few weeks sufficed to lay me on a most painful sick-bed, 
with a fierce attack of gastrorrhcea, the most distressing malady 
I had ever yet experienced in the course of a long life. 

When I was within the very gates of death, my dear friend 
Margetson saved me by advising my instant removal to my old 
Birchington quarters. 

I had a hard and protracted struggle for it, indeed ; but the 
beneficent health-giving, tone-restoring genius loci of this blessed 
little place gave me another chance of recovery. 

This seems to me the proper place to crave permission to 
express my most heartfelt gratitude to graciou^ Mrs. O'Eourke 
for the unvarying gentleness and untiring patience with which 
she nursed me through the very worst phases of my fearful 
malady, bearing with truly angelic sweetness the wildest and 
vilest outbreaks of temper into which my sufferings would but 
too often goad me. Not alone this, but in the indispensable 
prosaic matter-of-fact business relations between us, she showed 
how lamentably deficient she was in her calculating power, for 
which I had been disposed to give her such high credit in the 
affair of the missing hamper. She compute with double-chalk 
entries ! Why, her arithmetic was truly deplorable. She made 
out that a pound sterling added to another pound sterling came 
exactly to nine shillings, and, with woman's proverbial obstinacy, 
she would carry her point. The blessings of an old man rest on 
her head ! 

Placed thus in exceptionally favourable local conditions, under 
the truly intelligent medical treatment of a thoroughly rational 
physician of vastest and widest experience, such as my dear 
friend Parker Margetson, with the splendid nursing I enjoyed, 
liberally supplied with first-rate physic by my dear friend Bullock, 
and with pure wine and old Cognac by two excellent Germans, 
Louis Hermann and Herman Schliiter, right good fellows and 
true, whom I have known and loved for years, and whose gener- 
ous friendship has contributed largely indeed to lengthen my 
days in the land, I managed somehow to pull through.* 

* " I have received testimonials in many ways, and of many degrees 
of value, and they have always been, unfortunately, acceptable," says 



368 REMINISCENCES OF 

Yet was it a long, hard struggle, and I was for months 
hovering in the valley of the shadow of death. 

In those days I often would wend my way slowly and pain- 
fully to the quiet little churchyard surrounding the quaint old 
church of All Saints, to wander among the graves, on mournful 
thoughts intent. As I have already had occasion to state, I 
must plead guilty to a rooted irrational dislike of the notion of 
being buried, no matter where. But in my then fast wasting 
and waning state I could not but strive to take kindly to the 
miniature Necropolis of Birchington. I saw something congruous 
in tHe idea that I, born in distant lands on a mighty river, and 
restlessly thrown about all my days on the storm-tossed waves 
of a roving life, should find rest and peace at last in the " Peace 
Yard," as the Germans term it with such simple pathos, of a 
small village church on the English coast. It pleased the Powers 
on High to decree otherwise. 

In 1858, my ever dear friend Kobert Brough casually intro- 
duced me to Dante Gabriel Eossetti, then a young man of about 
thirty Eobert's own age. Brough was intimate with Eossetti, 
to whom he dedicated one of his own poetic productions. I 
cannot exactly call to mind which, but I believe it was " Songs of 
the Governing Classes," a series of acutely pointed, yet stingless 
social satires, burked somehow at the time. 

I passed about an hour in the society of the painter-poet, who 
charmed me with the sweet witchery of his brilliant conversation. 
I met him once again in 1860; I believe it was a short time after 
the Savage Club performance,, at the Lyceum. A few brief 

the father of Little borrit, and the Marshalsea. So have I in the 
course of a rather long and chequered career. With Mr. Dorrit said 
testimonials generally took the shape of money. With me they have 
mostly taken the shape of wine, or things ejusdem generis, and I have 
always been much pleased with them, just like Mr. Dorrit. But never 
but once before have I felt so deeply grateful to the kind testimonialists 
as I do feel to my friends MM. Hermann and SchMter. The one 
exceptional instance here referred to, in which a vinous testimonial has 
ever given me equal pleasure, was the presentation of a dozen of choice 
Bordeaux by an Indian judge, Mr. Evans, a friend of my friend Edward 
Wilson, who sent it me in acknowledgment of the gratification he 
kindly professed to have derived from the perusal of a tale of mine in 
Tinsleys' Magazine (" A Psychological Problem "). 

The acquaintance of MM. Hermann and Schliiter I made years ago 
at the Vienna Beer Saloon, a most excellent restaurant in the Strand, 
carried on at the time by a dear old friend of mine, now departed, M. 
Adolf Berndes, and at present by another of my friends, M. Darrnstatter. 
I have passed many of the happiest hours of my life in this place. 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 369 

months more, and the connecting link between us was snapped 
asunder by Brough's death. I never could or would impose 
myself unasked upon any one. I never met Dante Rossetti 
again in the flesh, but I continued to admiringly cultivate a close 
intimacy with the productions of his pen and pencil. 

And now he is no more ; and he lies buried in this Birchington 
Churchyard, and I am told, with what foundation I know not, 
that it was the perusal of a paper of mine on Birchington, pub- 
lished last year in Tinsleya* Magazine, which induced him to go 
there in search of a possible recovery. There he sleeps, per- 
chance to dream of those images of immortal beauty with which 
his mind was so richly stored. 

I say I had a long and hard struggle for it. 

My poor, proud stomach unforgivingly offended, seemingly, 
with my persistent efforts, under duress, to force an impossible 
task upon it, struck digestion work altogether, obstinately de- 
clining to retain food of whatever kind flesh, fish, or fowl, bread 
or biscuit, cake or custard, beef tea and mutton broth alike 
nay, there were days when even wine and cognac, with Apolli- 
naris, were uncompromisingly refused admission. And all this 
time the dreadful flux of morbidly altered mucus continued 
almost without intermission. It threatened to be a case of panta 
rhei with me, for all of me was fast dissolving and flowing away. 

In August, 1879, when I entered the Charterhouse, I weighed 
very close upon 14 stone. In August, 1880, 1 was reduced to 
something like 11 stone, and by December I had lost another 
14 pounds. 

Antaeus of old was fabled to derive renewed vigour when- 
ever he touched the earth, his mother. In some such 
fashion the Continent had been to me for long years a Mater 
Terra. Whenever I had felt weary and faint from wrestling with 
tho Hercules of forced mental labour, I had taken a trip to 
Holland or Belgium, Germany or France and I had always come 
back to my English home refreshed and strengthened. 

Acting upon his knowledge of this fact, my friend Margetson 
prescribed a change of the venue as they have it in law to 
Paris. 

Over to the French metropolis I went accordingly, with 
cheerful obedience. But whether it was due to the unwonted 
severity of the winter season in the blessed year of our Lord, 
1881, or to whatever other cause or circumstance, for the first 
two months of my stay in my dearly-beloved Paris the change 
did not benefit me. Indeed, up to the middle of March I con- 

2 B 



370 REMINISCENCES OF 

tinued to go down hill, slowly but surely. Digestion and nutrition 
seemed altogether out of the question in my then sorely dilapi- 
dated state, while the dreadful drain upon my sadly reduced 
substance continued almost incessant and undiminished. 

On March 14, 1881, 1 weighed 9 stone 9 Ibs. ! an almost un- 
exampled reduction in weight that is to say, when followed by 
ultimate recovery, and certainly the more wonderful at my 
advanced age. By a happy inspiration as shown by the result 
I suddenly took it into my noddle to drop soups and fish and 
fowl, on which I had desperately striven to subsist, but which 
would not stay on my stomach, and to take, of all dishes in the 
world, to galantine in vinegar brine (solution of salt in vinegar) 
alternately with devilled sardines. Vinegar brine I firmly 
believe to be the most perfect substitute for the natural gastric 
juice. It may sound strange, but it is nevertheless a- great fact, 
that these two apparently so curiously unsuitable dishes were 
taken to so kindly by my hard-tried and much-suffering digester, 
that I may conscientiously affirm they literally dragged me back 
from out of the very jaws of death. They, and they alone, 
restored my stomach to its pristine tone ; to this extent, at least, 
that it will now once more as of old digest in proper time any 
well-prepared article of food. 

I venture to dwell upon this at unconscionable length, perhaps, 
simply that I believe in all sincerity my experience may serve in 
certain apparently desperate cases of dyspepsia. Experto credite 
ye who may be thus afflicted ! 

Upon my return to England, in May, 1881, 1 weighed just 
upon 10 stone, and measured 35 inches round the waist. I have 
now reached again a little above 13 stone, and measure 45 inches 
round the waist ! 

There is one unlucky drawback to this, to a man of my limited 
exchequer means. I am outgrowing my clothes over-fast. Only 
fancy ! a boy of my age outgrowing his suits ! My tailor, who is 
an excellent artist in his line, is rather staggered by this strange 
phenomenon, and he is beginning to protest inconveniently 
against this inconvenient habit. Indeed, he has been darkly 
hinting of late the desirableness of a corresponding increase of 
my banking balance a hard task to put upon a man who has no 
banker and no balance. Well, who knows but this other apparent 
impossibility may after all come to pass too ! 

Well, well ! At all events the Old Bohemian's weather-worn 
bark has at last found comparatively safe moorings ; and although 
my unconquerable roving disposition may not let me pass my now 
fast-declining days quietly in harbour (reficit rates quassas ~nauta 



AN OLD BOHEMIAN. 371 

indocllis quietem pati), yet my future voyages will necessarily be 
confined to the merest coastings unless an enterprising pub- 
lisher should enable me to carry out my projected " trip on a 
tricycle, from Caen to Cannes, by a very old Bohemian,' with 
photographic illustrations of scenery, and geographical, geolo- 
gical, physical, statistical and historic notes " Lectorea benevoli 
valete I 



THE END. 



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