Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

VOL. 4.]

The Wild-Man of Borneo.

181

His beverage in Java was water ; on This animal neither practises the griboard ship, it was as diversified as his mace and antics of other monkeys, nor food. He preferred coffee and tea, but possesses their perpetual proneness to would readily take wine, and exempli- mischief. Gravity approaching to melfied his attachment to spirits by stealing ancholy, and mildness, were sometimes the Captain's brandy-bottle : since his strongly expressed in his countenance, arrival in London, he has preferred beer and seem to be the characteristics of and milk to any thing else, but drinks his disposition. When he first came wine and other liquors.

amongst strangers, he would sit for In his attempts to obtain food, he af- hours with his band upon bis head, forded uz many opportunities of judg- looking pensively at all around him ; ing of his sagacity and disposition. He or when inuch incommoded by their was always very impatient to seize it examination, would hide himself bewhen held out to him, and became pas- neath any covering that was at hand, sionate when it was not soon given up; His mildness was evinced by bis forand would chase a person all over the bearance under injuries, which were ship to obtain it. I seldom came on grievous before he was excited to redeck without sweetmeats or fruit in my venge ; but he always avoided those pocket, and could never escape his vigi- who often teased him. He soon belant eye. Sometimes I endeavoured to came strongly attached to those who evade him by ascending to the mast- kindly used him. By their side he head, but was always overtaken or in- was fond of sitting ; and, getting as tercepted in my progress. When he close as possible to their persons, came up with me on the shrouds, he would take their hands, between his would secure himself by one foot to the lips, and fly to them for protection. rattling, and confine my legs with the From the boatswain of the Alceste, other, and one of his hands, whilst be who shared his meals with him, and rified my pockets. If he found it im- was his chief favourite, although he possible to overtake me, he would climb sometimes purloined the grog and the to a considerable height on the loose biscuit of his benefactor, he learned to sigging, and then drop suddenly upon eat with a spoon ; and might be often me. Or if, perceiviog his intention, I seen sitting at his cabin-door enjoying attempted to descend, he would slide his coffee, quite voembarrassed by down a rope and meet me at the bottom those who observed bim, and with a of the shrouds. Sometimes I fastened grotesque and sober air that seemed a an orange to the end of a rope, and low- burlesque on human nature. ered it to the deck from the mast-bead; Next to the boatswain, I was peraod as soon as he attempted to seize it, haps his most intimate acquaintance. drew it rapidly up. After being several He would always follow me to the times foiled in endeavouring to obtain mast-head, whither I often went for it by direct means, he altered his plan, the sake of reading apart from the noise Appearing to care little about it, he of the ship ; and having satisfied himwould remove to some distance, and as- self that my pockets contained no eatacend the rigging very leisurely for some bles, would lie down by my side, and time, and then by a sudden spring catch pulling a topsail entirely over him, tbe rope which held it. If defeated peep from it occasionally to watch my again by my suddenly jerkiog the rope, movements. he would at first seem quite in despair, His favourite amusement in Java relinquish his effort, and rush about the was in swinging from the branches of rigging, screaming violently. But he trees, in passing from one tree to would always return, and again seizing another, and in climbing over the roofs the rope, disregard the jerk, and allow of houses ; on board, in hanging by it to run through his hand till within his arms from the ropes, and ia rompreach of the orange; but if again foiled, ing with the boys of the ship. He would come to my side, and taking me would entice them into play by strikby the arm, confine it, whilst he hauled ing them with his hand as they passed, the orange up.

and bounding from them, but allowiog them to overtake him and engage in a which he expressed by opening his mock scuffle, in which he used his mouth, showing his teeth, seizing and hands, feet, and mouth. If any con- biting those who were near bim. jecture could be formed from these Sometimes indeed he seemed to be frolics of his mode of attacking an ad- almost driven to desperation ; and on versary, it would appear to be his first two or three occasions committed an object to throw him down, then to se- act, which, to a rational being, would cure him with his hands and feet, and have been called the threatening of suithen wound him with his teeth. cide. If repeatedly refused an orange

Of some small monkeys on board, when he attempted to take it, he would from Java, he took little notice, whilst shriek violently and swing furiously under the observation of the persons of about the ropes; then return and enthe ship. Once indeed he attempted deavour to obtain it; if again refused, to throw a small cage, containing three he would roll for some time like an of them, overboard; because, proba- angry child upon the deck, uttering bly, he had seen them receive food, of the most piercing screams; and then which he could obtain no part. But suddenly starting up, rush furiously although he held so littie intercourse over the side of the ship, and disappear. with them when under our inspection, On first witnessing this act, we thought I had reason to suspect that he was that he had thrown himself into the less indifferent to their society when sea; but on a search being made, free from our observation ; and was found him concealed under the chaing. one day summoned to the top-gallant I have seen him exbibit violent yard of the mizen-mast, u overlook alarm on two occasions only, when he him playing with a young male mon- appeared to seek for safety in gaining key. Lying on his back, partially as high an elevation as possible. On covered with the sail, he for some time seeing eight large turtle brought on contemplated, with great gravity, the board, whilst the Cæsar was off the gambols of the monkey which bounded Island of Ascension, he climbed with over him ; but at length caught him all possible speed to a higher part of by the tail, and tried to envelope hiin the ship than he had ever before reachin bis covering. The monkey seemed ed ; and looking down upon them, to dislike the confinement, and broke projected his long lips into the form of from him, but again renewed its gam- a hog's snout, uttering at the same time bols, and although frequently caught a sound which might be described as always escaped. The intercourse how- between the croaking of a frog and the ever did not seem to be that of equals, grunting of a pig. After some time he for the Orang-Outang never conde- ventured to descend, but with great scended to romp with the monkey as caution, peeping continually at the he did with the boys of the ship. Yet turtle, but could not be induced to ap. the monkeys had evidently a great pre- proach within marry yards of them. He dilection for his company; for when- ran to the same beight and utiered the ever they broke loose, they took their same sounds on seeing some men bathway to his resting-place, and were often ing and splashing in the sea; and seen lurking about it, or creeping since his arrival in England, bas shown clandestinely towards him. There ap- nearly the same degree of fear at the peared to be no gradation in their inti- sight of a live tortoise. macy; as they appeared as coufidently Such were the actions of this apifamiliar with him when first observed mal, as far as they fell under my notice as at the close of their acquaintance during our voyage from Java ; and

But although so gentle when not they seem to include most of those exceedingly irritated, the Orang-Ou- which have been related of the Orangtang could be excited to violent rage, Qutang by other observers.”

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

From the Monthly Magazine, August, 1818.
RECOLLECTIONS OF CURRAN.

BY CHARLES PAILLIPS, ESQ.
THE AUTHOR'S INTRODUCTION TO was at home in all--he touched every
MR. CURRAN.

thing, and seemed as if he had created W H EN I was called to the bar, it-he mastered the human heart with

Mr. Curran was on the bench. the same ease that he did his violin. Not only bagless but briefiess, I was You wept, and you laughed, and you one day with many an associate taking wondered, and the wonderful creature the idle round of the hall of the Four who made you do all at will, never let Courts, when a common friend told it appear that he was more than your me he was commissioned by the Master equal, and was quite willing, if you of the Rolls to invite me to dinner that chose, to become your auditor. It is day at the Priory, a little country villa said of Swift, that his rule was to allow about four miles from Dublin. Those a minute's pause after he had concludwho recollect their first introduction to ed, and then, if no person took up the a really great man, may easily compre. conversation, to recommence himself. hend my delight and my consternation. Curran had no conversational rule Hour after hour was counted as it whatever ; he spoke from impulse, passed, and, like a timid bride, I feared and he had the art so to draw you into the one which was to make me happy, a participation, that, though you felt an It came at last, the important five inferiority, it was quite a contented one, o'clock, the ne plus ultru of the guest Indeed, nothing could exceed the urwho would not go dionerless at Cur- banity of his demeanour. At the time fan's. Never shall I forget my sensa- I speak of, he was turned of sixty, yet tions when I caught the first glimpse of he was as playful as a child. The exthe little man through the vista of bis tremes of you and age were met in avenue. There he was, as a thousand him; he had the experience of the one times afterwards I saw him in a dress and the simplicity of the other. At which you would imagine he had bor. five o'clock we sat down to dinner ; at rowed from his tipstaff-—bis hands in three in the morning we arose from bis sides—his face almost parallel table, and certainly balf the wish of with the horizon-his under lip pro- the enthusiastic lover was at least contruded, and the impatient step and the ceded—". Time," during that interval, eternal attitude only varied by the uusannihilated.From that day pause during wbich bis eye glanced till the day of his death I was his intifrom his guest to his watch, and froin mate and his associate. He had no his watch reproachfully to his dining- party to which I was not invited ; and room—it was an invincible peculiarity party or no party, I was always wel-one second after five o'clock, and he come. would not wait for the Viceroy. The HIS CALL TO THE BAR. moment he perceived me, he took ine In the year 1775, with, as he said by the hand, and said he would not himself, no living possession but al have any one introduce me, and with a pregnant wife, he was called to the bar manner, which I often thought was of Ireland. To that enlightened body, charmed, at once banished every ap- as at that day constituted, the “ future prehension, and completely familjarized men” of this country inay be allowed me at the Priory. I had often seen to turn with an excuseable and, in Curran-osten beard of him--often some sort, a national satisfaction. read him-but no man ever knew any The first fee of any consequence thing about him who did not see him which he received was througli Lord at his own table with the few whoin he Kilwarden's recommendation ; and his selected. He was a liule convivial recital of the incident cannot be withdeity! he soared in every region, and out its interest to the young profession

[ocr errors]

al aspirant, whom a temporary neglect he was quite inimitable. There was may have sunk into dejection. “I no plan which he did not detect-no then lived," said he, “ upon Hog Hill; web which he did not disentangle-and my wife and children were the chief the unfortunate wretch who commenced furniture of my apartments; and as to with all the confidence of pre-concerted my rent, it stood pretty much the same perjury, never failed to retreat before chance of its liquidation with the da- him in all the confusion of exposure. tional debt. Mrs. Curran, however, Indeed; it was almost impossible for was a barrister's lady, and what she the guilty to offer a successful resistance. wanted in wealth, she was well deter- He argued-hecajoled-he ridiculedmined should be supplied by dignity. he mimicked-he played off the various The landlady, on the other hand, had artillery of his talent upon the witnessno other idea of any gradation except he would affect earnestoess upon trifles, that of pounds, shillings, and pence. I and levity upon subjects of the most walked out one morning to avoid the serious import, until at length be sucperpetual altercations on the subject ; ceeded in creating a security that was with my mind, you may imagine, in fatal, or a sullenness that produced al! no very enviable temperament. I fell the consequences of prevarication. No into the gloom to which, from my in- matter how uofair the topic, he never fancy, I had been occasionally subject. failed to avail himself of it; acting upon I had a family for whom I had no the principle, that in law, as well as in dinner ; and a landlady for whom I war, every stratagem was admissible. If had no rent. I had gone abroad in he was hard pressed, there was no pecudespondence- I returned home almost liarity of person-uosingularity of name in desperation. When I opened the --no eccentricity of profession, at which door of my study, where Lavater alone he would not grasp trying to confound could have found a library, the first the self-possession of the witness in the, object which presented itself was an no matter how excited, ridicule of the immense folio of a brief, twenty golden audience. guineas wrapped up beside it, and the

MILTON. name of Old Bob Lyons marked upon There are many who may remember the back of it. I paid my landlady— his table dissertations upon Milton; and bought a good dinner-gave Bob Ly. I choose to call them dissertations, ons a share of it—and that dinner was although delivered in conversation, bethe date of my prosperity.” Such was cause they were literally committed to his own exact account of his profesc memory. It was very casy, in vulgar sional advancement.

phrase, to draw on him for the criticism; HIS FORENSIC talents, and, to do him justice, he pever refused From this period he began rapidly acceptance. That criticism was certo rise in professional estimation, tainly a finished specimen at once of his There was no cause in the metropolis want of taste and of his wonderful of any interest in which he was not con- talents. He hated Milton like one of cerned, nor was there a county in the the inhabitants of his own pandemonium. provinces which, at some time or other His choice of a subject, which had so he did pot visit on a special retainer. It long perplexed the poet, he thought was an object almost with every one peculiarly injudicious. “If the theme to pre-occupy so successful or so dan- was true,” he would say, “it ought not gerous an advocate ; for, if he failed in to be the topic of profane poetry; and, inducing a jury to sympathize with his if it was not true, it would be very client, he at all events left a picture of easy to have invented one more interhis adversary behind him, which sur- esting." He would then run through vived and embittered the advantages of the management of the poem, in a strain victory. Nor was his eloquence his of alternate ridicule and sublimity that only weapon; at cross-examination, was quite amazing. It was as impossithe most difficult and by far the most ble to hear his disbelief that the Almighty bazardous part of a barrister's profession, could wage war upon his angels, without

VOL 4:]
The Mad-House,

185 an awful admiration; as it was his de- part, of a noble family myself, I felt no scription of primitive simplicity, without degradation in practising it; it has laughter. Adam and Eve he certainly added, not only to my wealth, but to trealed with very little filial reverence, my dignity." Curran was silent; which

LORD ERSKINE." "' the host observing, called for his opinWe met at the table of an illustrious ion. “Lord Erskine,” said 'he, “ has personage. The royal host, with much so eloquently described all the advancomplimentary delicacy, directed the tages to be derived from the profession, conversation to the profession of bis that I hardly thought my poor opinion celebrated visitors. ' Lord Erskine very was worth adding; but perhaps it was eloquently took the lead. He descant- perhaps. I arn a better practical ined, in terms which few other men could stance of its' advantages 'even than his command," on the interesting duties of lordship: he was ennobled by birth the bar, and the high honours to which before he came to it; but it has,” said its success conducted. “ No man in the he, making an 'obeisance to bis host land,” said he, “need be ashamed to "it has in my person raised the son of belong to such a profession : for my u peasant to the table of his prince.”

From the Monthly Magazine, September, 1818.
THE MAD-HOUSE.

From the French I TRAVELLED the road from cruel expression could never be imi. I Paris to Charenton, and, arriving at tated, except by the first of our trathe hospital, Monsieur C gratified gedians.* * This wretch,"+ said our my desire of inspecting an establishment guide, “is a man of distinguished birth, which he goveros with a zeal worthy of to whom Nature gave the heart of a the highest eulogium."

tiger, and the genius of an ape; the days "Madoess,” said he, as we traversed of his youth were marked by crimes, the first court, “is, when well con- which be dared publicly to apologize for sidered, only an excessive development in inore advanced years. As a punishof the vices, the caprice, and the follies, ment, he was deprived of the power of which exist in society. The world pre- doing mischief; he became mad, and, sents an infinite number of species, for want of other victims, it is now on which may, however, be classed under himself that he vents bis fury. Ilis exthree heads--phrenzy, maria, and im- istence accuses the justice of the laws; becility. To the first belong all the his madness has averiged the public violent passions, and the numerous morals.” We speedily left this misfamily of vices, crimes, and excesses, creant, who took leave of us with this which they produce; in the second, may charitable warning—“Make yourselves be ranged the most prejudicial defecis, easy! I will take upon myself the and most marked follies; the third com- trouble of having you flayed alive." prehends the innumerable varieties of His neighbour did not appear legs ibis malady of the human mind, which agitated, though more an object of comreduces man to the state of a plant; miseration. He articulated, in a low from whence it arises, (said the doctor, voice, phrases without connexion ; the laugbiog,) that society is sometio,es burtien of which, however, way, the compared to a plalte-bund.

words “ wife," "rival," and "false We approached the quarters of the toupee." This last word figured so furious, whose howlings redoubled when singularly in bis tragical plaints, that I they saw us through the bars of their requested an explanation of it froin the cells. I stopped for a moment to look doctor. “There is, in truth,” said he, at a man of an attenuated forin, whose “ something very risible, if not in the looks were more wicked than fierce,and who menaced us with a smile; whose * Taima.

2 ATAENEOM. Vol. 4.

+ The Marquis de Sade.

« ZurückWeiter »