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"That the most entertaining publication of the day be immediately set on foot, under the title of · Knight's Quarterly Magazine.'

“But who was to edite the work ? Who was to preside in the parliament, and say 'order' to its unruly members ?

Many names and many pretensions were successively canvassed. It was a very knotty point.

One candidate was rejected because he was a poet, and another because he was none; one because he talked sentiment, and another because he talked-Greek; one was too great a philosopher, and another was too great a fool; one was too fond of burlesque, and another was too fond of Burgundy. There was no chance of coming to a conclusion. The civil war became wondrously uncivil ; all was din, and chaos, and headach; the silent were growing out of spirits, and the speakers were growing out of tune. Finally our second resolution was moved by our romantic friend Cecil; and carried unanimously.

That the Lady Mary Vernon be requested to assume the sovereignty of this book, and to nominate responsible Ministers for its conduct.'

“And in pursuance of the said resolution, my hand drew up the petition which your Ladyship has impartially examined; which your brother has scandalously disowned ; and which my fair cousin, the honourable Miss Julia Lascelles, is at this moment twisting and torturing for the manufacture of Allumettes!”

The honourable Miss Julia Lascelles took up the ivory Cupid in whose quiver she had been arranging her handywork, and placing him before the Divan, moved “ that the Petition do lie on the Table.”

“The Petition does lie abominably,” said Joyeuse; and the investigation was resumed.

“Mr. Marmaduke Villars will be good enough to state the talents on which he relies for the execution of his very intelligible plan." “ It is really very awkward to talk of one's self :

-n'importe: it must be endured. I have seen something of life, and acquired something of taste; I understand a little of cookery, but more of dress; I have mixed in all circles; I have been a favourite with the Gods of the Gallery, and the Goddesses of Almack's; I have listened to the Billingsgate of St. Giles's and the Billingsgate of St. Stephen's; I have worn masks of every complexion, and studied every variation of ton. I have roamed all Europe over ; I have adorned every Court and criticized every dynasty; I have seen Murat in arms, and Ferdinand fishing for oysters; I have bowed to Buonaparte at the levée, and kneeled with Louis at the mass. I have talked folly with the French, and literature with the German, and patriotism with the Spaniard,

and poetry with the Italian, and love with them all. And now I am come hither with my pen and portfolio in my hand, to be annoying or amusing, excellent or a bore, even as your Ladyship and the Public shall find me.”

“Remarkably satisfactory!- I shall ask you no further ques. tions. Arthur Cecil, come into court: your hand writing proclaims you art and part of this nefarious transaction : what are the hopes you have of escaping the yawns of your readers, and the murmurs of

your bookseller ?" Arthur Cecil, of whose character I can convey, in the compass of a few lines, no idea except that which will naturally be asssociated with a highly flushed cheek, and a magnificent forehead, and thick black hair, and eyes of unusual brilliancy, stept into the glittering circle, with a temporary look of embarrassment, and folded his arms over his breast :

I,” he said, “ have looked into the lakes and fields, for those enjoyments which our friend Marmaduke has found in Buhl ornaments and Turkey carpets. There are few who understand me, fewer who sympathize with me. Marmaduke is a man of the world, a man of modes, and compliments, and customs; what is the leaf, and the rivulet, and the green herb to him?

"The primrose on the river's brim,
A yellow primrose is to him,

And it is nothing more;' Do I envy him his tastes or his feelings, his bow or his badinage ? For his fashionable costume or his foreign accent would I exchange

that serene and blessed mood
In which the affections gently lead us on, -
Until the breath of this corporeal frame,
And even the motion of our human blood,
Almost suspended, we are laid asleep
In body, and become a living soul;
While with an eye made quiet by the power
Of harmony, and the deep power of joy,

We see into the life of thingsA few laughed, and a few yawned : Frederic Vernon took snuff, and Amelia Lorraine said it was delightful, and vowed she must have a copy for her Album.

My dear Arthur,” said Frederic, "have you not Wordsworth's poems, prettily bound and lettered, in the left hand corner of the second shelf of your mahogany bookcase ?"

It is very true!"

“Oh! you own the soft impeachment ?-It is quite sufficient; I shall ask you no further questions ;"--and Arthur was dismissed.

Charlotte Stanhope simpered, and observed that “Mr. Arthur Cecil was always a great favourite with Melpomene." Lady Mary tapped her with her fan, and said, “he was always a great favourite with me, Charlotte, which is much more to the purpose : ” and then there was a little biting of lips, and the examination proceeded.

“ Tristram Merton, come into court.” There came up a short manly figure, marvellously upright, with a bad neckcloth, and one hand in his waistcoat pocket. Of regular beauty he had little to boast; but in faces where there is an expression of great power, or of great good humour, or both, you do not regret its absence.

They were glorious days,” he said, with a bend, and a look of chivalrous gallantry to the circle around him, “ they were glorious days for old Athens when all she held of witty and of wise, of brave and of beautiful, was collected in the drawingroom of Aspasia. In those, the brightest and noblest times of Greece, there was no feeling so strong as the devotion of youth, no talisman of such virtue as the smile of beauty. Aspasia was the arbitress of peace and war,

of arts and arms,

the Pallas of the spear and the pen: we have looked back to those golden hours with transport and with longing. Here our classical dreams shall in some sort wear a dress of reality; he who has not the piety of a Socrates, may at least fall down before as lovely a divinity; he who has not the power of a Pericles may at least kneel before as beautiful an Aspasia."

His tone had just so much earnest that what he said was felt as a compliment, and just so much banter that it was felt as nothing more. As he concluded he dropped on one knee, and paused.

“ Tristram," said the Attorney-General, "we really are sorry to cramp a culprit in his line of defence; but the time of the court must not be taken up : if you can speak ten words to the purpose

“Prythee, Frederic,” retorted the other, " leave me to manage my own course; I have an arduous journey to run; and, in such a circle, like the poor prince in the Arabian Tales, I must be frozen into stone before I can finish my task without turning to the right or the left.”

“For the love you bear us, a truce to your similes: they shall be felony without benefit of clergy; and silence for an hour shall be the penalty.”

“A penalty for similes !-horrible! Paul of Russia prohibited round hats, and Chihu of China denounced white teeth ;but this is atrocious!”

I beseech you, Tristram, if you can for a moment forget your omniscience, let us

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" I will endeavour. It is related of Zoroaster, that

“Zoroaster before Ladies ! monstrous! you might as well eulo gize couleur de rose before the President of the Royal Society.”

Upon my credit, Frederic, when I look at the faces before my eyes, and the narrow limits within which the officer compels me to run, I almost fancy myself tottering into Paradise by the command of Monkir, over Mahomet's narrow bridge, with the Houris beckoning from the bank.”

“ Then for heaven's sake step straight forward, or you cannot chuse but sink by the way.”

“An algebraist could not travel more scrupulously to his point. Confucius himself

“To what point you are tending, my dear Tristram, may I die a blockhead if I know : but you have now started from twenty different points of the compass, and are travelling

“ Even as Kehama drove into Padalon!”

“Oh, that he had chained you to his axle!” said Frederic, tearing off his wig in a passion, “put it all in the book, and be gone :

for the sober part of our jury have left us, and old Time has tolled his longest chime, and my sister is as tired as the Chancellor at the close of the Session.'

“And now whom of our formidable list will your Ladyship wish me to question. Shall Henry Baldwin the politician prate to you upon late occurrences, or shall Joseph Haller the moralist prose to you upon

late hours ? Will you have Ellis the short with his high heels, or Aymer the tall with his low bow? Will you have Eustace from the glee club with his song of life and merriment, or Edward from Waterloo with his narrative of death and woe? Will you have William from Brighton with news of the Pavillion and the King, or Archibald from Edinburgh with his anecdotes of Jeffrey and Sir James? Shall I call Murray who hunts with the Derby, or Pendragon who dines with the Kitcat ? Lewis who comes out of the Temple, or John who is going into the Church? Edmund who rhymes for his Mistress, Reginald who rhymes for the Chronicle?

" You shall call no body but me,” cried a shrill voice; “ you shall call nobody but me, Vyvyan Joyeuse !” And immediately a whimsical apparition leaped with an Opera step into the front of the battalia ; a tall thin youth, with long sallow features, thick brown hair curled attentively, and small grey eyes. He threw a quick shifting glance upon his auditors, and then, dangling the ribbon of his glass with both hands, stood prepared for his interrogator.

“ From what school of manners, good Vyvyan, have you come out so perfect ?

“I come from Cambridge, Sir; have passed six pleasant hours in your company; shall be happy to return all kindness received


from Lady Mary and her coterie, at my rooms in the Great Court, Trinity College!”

“ In sooth there is a great possibility of her Ladyship’s profiting by your suggestion : meantime, if your wild brain is sufficiently clear,

“Upon my conscience, Frederic, you cannot be ignorant that your claret is sufficiently meritorious, and that Vyvyan Joyeuse hath the wit to know it; nevertheless, if I am suspected of less wisdom or more fun than was my natural allotment,—lend me a rapier, and I will scratch Shock on his little smutty nose, before he has time to wink with his eyes.”

Mercy forbid !” cried Miss Amelia, and caught up her lapdog in a fright.

“ Or give me your new pistols, and I will knock little Alabaster's bow from his hand, without grazing one of his fingers!”

“ You will dare no such rebellion,” said Lady Mary, pointing archly to the little torch-bearer,

“Qui que tu sois, voila ton maitre,

Il l'est, le fut, ou le doit être."" Or a pencil,” continued the jester, “and I will caricature you all in ten minutes.'

And send us to the print shops, do," said Laura, who knew she had nothing to apprehend.

“Or wake Dr. Heavyhit, and I will talk Homer for an hour."

“ Homer was a great man, a very great man,” said the Doctor opening his eyes.

“ Or call Julia into court, and I will talk nonsense for two."

“You are a great fool, a very great fool,” said the Doctor, closing them again.

I am afraid the Doctor is very right,” said a kinder and sweeter voice ; “ but his buffoonery shall be pardoned, and his bidding shall be done.” And Julia Vernon stept lightly forward ; a slight, childish figure, with loose raven ringlets dancing upon her neck, eyes of the most prying jet, dark yet delicate complexion, and small features, expressive of almost hoydenish merriment. I am here at your call," she continued ; and Vyvyan, flinging himself on one knee with a theatrical air, began to chaunt

* And all fell down in a ring around

That youth and maiden fair,

For she they deemed was an ocean nymph." Is it so, Vyvyan?” said the lady; “ then, indeed,

* You can call spirits from the vasty deep,

And they will come when you do call for them.' “ But rise, I beseech you ; for you kneel very awkwardly, and I have a thousand questions to ask.”

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