« ZurückWeiter »
As that in which he caught us all so clever ;
And brought our stiffened members into play.
How fair and candid on both sides it is :
We have our way in that, and he in this.' Here we must lay down our pen, and doff our spectacles; and express, as intelligibly as laughter and astonishment will permit, our sincere gratitude to Mr. Rondeau, for so rich a treat as his · Humorous Recitations !'
• Jump a little nagtail, one, two, three!' Now who would not expect that the way of Mr. Rondeau, the mode in which' he corrected these youthful ebullitions, was the old established receipt, recommended by Solomon ? — No! Mr. Rondeau is an anti-flagellant; and agreeing as we do with him, (where any delinquents, above children, are to be punished,) we cannot but wonder that a ludi magister, so averse from this antiquated practice, should have such evident satisfaction in recurring to the theory as these pages betray! We have heard of those who condemn vice in such ternis as virtue would blush to utter; and, certainly, we have known instances in which a professing delicacy has indulged in denunciations against grossness which, to say the least, were unnecessary. Why should a delicate author write as above? or, why should an anti-flagellant write as follows?
• The Young Tyro's Release.
Grammar - geography- and smarting-;' Mr. Rondeau, however, is endeavouring to disgust us with flagellation; and he proceeds, therefore, in • The Pedagogue's
Oration in Praise of Castigation,' to a variety of allusions and rhymes, which fully answer his purpose. The serious object of his book is not developed until we arrive at the second part; until the prose-composition, which he intends for an argument against public schools, succeeds to the ingenious poetry, of which we have offered our humorous readers so accomplished a specimen. It is here curious to observe how wholly untouched any one of the real defects, in our noble and truly English public schools, has been left by this their zealous enemy! Far be it from us to imagine, for a moment, that the Master of Clayhill Academy could have been influenced by any feeling but public spirit
, in his unmeasured attack on our great classical foundations. Indeed, he has informed us that irony is the prominent characteristic of these recitations;' as, therefore, he of course intends us to discover that no such scenes as
• Jump a little nagtail, one, two, three,' ever do occur at Clayhill, we may conclude, by parity of reasoning, that he does not really mean to charge the various and gross offences on Eton, Westminster, Harrow, &c. &c. which, to an undiscerning eye, his work would seem to insinuate. Among these charges, a very prominent accusation is founded on the indiscriminate study of authors so offensive to decency as Anacreon, Juvenal, and Horace, are represented to be by Mr. Rondeau. We do not believe that much of Anacreon is studied at any public school: but we are quite sure that, whether Anacreon be a genuine Antient, or only a Monkish Classic, much (although far from all) of his little volume might be innocently used by school-boys. With regard to Horace and Juvenal, were it not for Mr. R.'s acknowleged irony, we should say that there must be a happy union of ignorance and calumny indeed in that reporter who can so represent them; or can imply that every part of these authors is read at public schools. With respect to expurgate editions, various opinions are entertained; and, to state the argument of their opponents at the lowest, it is doubtful whether they may not as often be turned into an engine of mischief as into an instrument of good.
Mr. Rondeau sets up a man of straw, intitled (with his usual taste) Generalissimo Superbo, to advocate the cause of public schools; and a Lord and Lady Mannerly are his adversaries; the latter of whom joins, con amore, in the most piquant points of the discussion.
Since, however, Mr. Rondeau evidently succeeds better in amusing his readers as an ironical humorist than in instruct
ing them as an ironical reasoner, we shall select another choice morceau from the lighter portion of the work:
Pupils conversing in Bed. · Harry Hairbrain. How abominably soon we are always hurried to bed.
Timothy Trifler. O! I care not; we may as well be in bed as to sit poring over one useless lesson or other.
• Anthony Racket. I should not mind going so soon to bed if we could but indulge in a right good game of fun in the bed· Charley Fairface. That's what I say; but Mr.
is so particularly strict. We may not kick the clothes off, nor get into another boy's bed, nor scamper out of one chamber into another, nor tell idle stories (as he calls them), nor make use of “ vulgar and indecent expressions," nor call one another liars,
• Hector. O! peace to such stuff; I shall say what I please, and do as I please, and go where I please, in the holidays.' This naïve scene is succeeded by a juvenile song;
which brings in the two following interesting characters :
Enter Mr. C. and Mr. P. Assistants. Mr. C. Gentlemen, we request to be informed of the nature of this strange noise, and who has been so rude as to make so shameful a breach of order !
[ A dead silence, — interrupted by loud and affected snores. • Gentlemen, this affectation is too broad to answer any other purpose than to add hypocrisy to disorder. You could not have dropped into so sound a sleep at the moment of closing your song Mr. P., did you not hear a most insufferable noise ?
• Mr. P. I did, certainly, which seemed to me like singing or crying; but I rather think it was the latter.
[Still a silence is maintained. Presently Hairbrain affects to sing in his sleep: - thus –
• No tasks, no lessons, to distress;
Let the horns sound this, I say,
O! (snores again] what a joyous happy day. · Mr. C. Upon my word these boys are too bad : come, Mr. P., we had better go down ; Mr. R. will to-morrow endeavour to find some remedy for this strange disease of bellowing lethargy. [Assistants retire.]'
Again we cordially think this care-killing author; and we shall conclude our panegyric on his work by the subsequent
The late well-known master of one of our best public schools was accustomed to express, by particular intonations of voice, his feelings of hope or of despair respecting the improvement of suchpupils as he received from several of the suburban academies. He anticipated, doubtless, the degree of trouble which each boy would give him, to unteach the instructions of his preceding school-master. When a boy came from Dr. of --, the modern Quinctilian in question wrapped his gown complacently about him, and, mildly nodding his wig, uttered his well-satisfied « Hol ho :" — when from Mr.
-- the communication was followed by a good-humoured, but somewhat ambiguous “ Eh? humph :" - but when from Mr. of the virtuous patience of the learned pedagogue was sometimes known wholly to fail, and “ Oh Lord! Oh Lord !” escaped from him, as it were involuntarily. We leave Mr. Rondeau to apply the appropriate exclamation to himself.
Art. V. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of
London, for the Year 1819.
Part II. MATHEMATICS, &c.
Tides near Dungeness. By James Anderson, Captain in the Royal Navy. - It appears from this memoir that the tides, between the limits specified in the title, present a rather singular class of phænomena; which have been hitherto attributed by pilots and others to the meeting of the tides from the North Sea and the Channel. The peculiarities, as stated by Captain Anderson, are these :
* The tides rise between the easternmost point of Fairleigh and the North Foreland from seven to eight feet higher than on either side of these points ; and during the last three hours and a quarter in which the tides run to the eastward, the water falls by the shore, making it half tide of ebb on the shore, or by the ground, when the current of the tide changes and begins to run from the eastward to the westward; and it still continues to fall by the shore for two hours and three quarters after the tide has so changed ; at which time it is low water every where within these limits. The course of the tide continues to run to the westward two hours and three quarters longer, during which time the water gradually rises by the shore, making nearly half-food by the land, Rav. APRIL, 1820.
at the time the current of the tide ceases to run to the westward; and returns again to the eastward, and continues to rise for three hours and a quarter, when it is high water by the ground. It then begins to fall again during the last three hours and a quarter, whilst the current of the tide sets to the eastward, as above stated; and so on in continual rotation.'
Captain A. then proceeds to shew that, instead of referring these circumstances to the meeting of the tides, we ought rather to consider them as the necessary consequence of the very sudden contraction of the channel between Dungeness and Cape D'Alprée, and the South Foreland and Calais Point.
The Resulis of Observations made at the Observatory of Trinity College, Dublin, for determining the Obliquity of the Ecliptic, and the Maximum of the Aberration of Light. By the Reverend J. Brinkley, D.D.F.R.S., &c. - Dr. Brinkley remarks that it has been an opinion almost generally received among astronomers, that observations of the winter-solstice have given a less obliquity of the ecliptic than observations of the summer-solstice. The explanation of this discordance seemed very difficult: but, in a work lately published by Mr. Bessel, the opinion itself is called in question: the author shewing that the observations of Dr. Bradley give the same results both in the summer and in the winter. His own (i.e. those of Mr. Bessel) also tend to the same conclusion : but the observations of Dr. Maskelyne, of M. Oriani, of M. Arago, of Mr. Pond, and of Dr. Brinkley, are in opposition.
It is not likely (says Dr. B.) that this difference really exists, but it is a question of some importance in astronomy, and the explanation thereof may throw some light on other points.
It is probable the difference arises from some unknown modi. fication of refraction. I find, and I believe other observers have found the same, that at the winter-solstice, an irregularity of refraction takes place for the sun greater than for the stars, at the same zenith-distance. The zenith-distance of the sun at this place is then nearly 77.
• What Mr. Bessel has adduced certainly tends to render the prevalent opinion doubtful.
It therefore appears to me of consequence, that astronomers should pay attention to the observ. ations at the winter-solstice. My observations at that time have been much fewer than in the summer, because, on account of the uncertainty of refraction, I considered them of less importance.
It has been proposed to make the two results agree, by an increase of the quantity of Bradley's mean refraction; but this could not be done without increasing it by a quantity greater than cau be justified by other determinations respecting refraction.'