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VIII. Cruel love, whose end is scorn' 345 The Romance of the Wiry-haired Ter-
rier. A Tale in three chapters 175
Rooms, “The Artists' and
Standards of Politeness .
II. • The Old Town'
Some Old School' Reflections
136 The Bloodless Battle of Brighton 442
London Flowers-The Floral Orna-
The Literature of the Blessed Isles :-
Mr. Mopes the Hermit ..
Philosophy in Slippers.-On Sickness
229 Zoological Studies in Cold Weather
Song.—Tell me you love me .. 135
Is it Friendship? Is it Love?
The Silent Lover
314 The Widow and the Fatherless 123
A STROLL IN THE PARK.' A
DAY cold, gray, cheerless as Back through the years that have
any day in February, and yet passed since Hyde Park was interthere is something in the air that sected by a chain of ponds, now speaks of milder breezes, of violets, flowing together-the Serpentine of and of spring-time; a something our days — to the time when the that lures me away from the warm, • Ring' which was laid out in the glowing hearth, out from between reign of Charles I. was in its glory; hermetically closed windows and long, long before it was deserted for doors; through the dreary, bustling the ‘Ride' and 'Ladies' Mile,' and town and away from the din and left to present an appearance which fashion of Piccadilly.
causes an observer of the present Past that statue which Westma- day to waver between whether it cott and the ladies of England have might be the remains of a Roman raised to do honour to the Duke and encampment, or of an unrivalled themselves, to a quiet spot - quiet troupe from Astley's at which he enough at this season of the year- gazed, instead of having once been in the Park which takes its name the resort of all that was brilliant, from the old manor of the Hyde ad- wealthy, witty and beautiful in the joining Knightsbridge.
world of the London society of that Back to some of the seventeenth- day. century summers as I walk along And thus, as I walk, gradually over the delicate coating of hoar- fade away these our modern days frost crisping under my feet, through and forms, and before me rises a some of the years that have gone by time when the doings here were so since Hyde Park, then in possession gay that prudent, far-sighted Pepys of abbot and convent, was first en- (the most wonderful instance on closed for the public good.
record of a man succeeding in life It is not a very important fact through always doing the right that the first keeper, George Roper, thing at the right time, whether was appointed early in the reign that right thing chanced to be of Edward VI.; but it is rather the eating of humble pie before interesting to know that he had only Majesty, or the breathing a long'sixpence per diem' as a reward for winded prayer before the Puritan the trouble it must have cost him to Protector)—Pepys on a pleasurekeep such a great, wild, unkempt tour heaved a sigh on the night of and uncared-for place, as we learn the 30th April, 1661, for that he'was this then highly rural Park was. somewhere else, and could not be Nor will it be necessary to dwell at in Hyde Park among the great gallength on the division of the Park lants and ladies which will be very in 1652 into three portions. The fine.' names of the purchasers and the Down the stream of time to later sums they gave are of little con- days than when Cromwell, whom sequence; they were large sums, all somehow or other one can never ending in a few pence.
imagine to have been much of a VOL. I.-NO. I.
whip, came to grief here through whatever may have been his faults lashing very furiously a set of Fries- to others, he was faithful, generous, land coach-horses which had been and kind; with him came De Grampresented to him by the Duke of mont, the polished, graceful FrenchHolstein-an injudicious present the man, the lover, and after six years course of events proved them to be. of uncertain courtship, the husband Cromwell loved Hyde Park well; of that Miss Hamilton who was the the stern-faced Protector visited it greatest beauty in a court, where often; and now, when those of to be' was to be beautiful. whom he dreamed not tread the There was also St. Evremond, the turf he once trod, and make merry blue-eyed Norman, most splendid in the vicinity of that place in which specimen of a most magnificently he once proved himself such an handsome race, who at the age of inefficient Jehu, he lies quietly, and fifty became the lover of Madame sleeps a deep sleep, hard by at Ty- Mazarin. This lady, in addition to burn.
having the reputation of being the Back to the days when the reign most beautiful woman in Europe of of gloom was over and the tide of her day, took high honours as a merriment had set in-to those days practical joker. Amongst many when Charles II.
other facetious tricks may be menmonarch' with the melancholy tioned her swamping the poor nuns face'-was king: who seems to have of a convent in which she had been as charming and reprehensible taken refuge once when in dire as most men who never say foolish distress, in their uncomfortable things and never do wise ones are beds. This feat she accomplished to the days when he was king and by causing the large reservoirs which England was ' merry England, as supplied the establishment with we are told so often that we have
water, to overflow. She also mixed reason to doubt it.
ink with their holy water in order That must have been a goodly to make the cross stand out well company which assembled in Hyde upon their foreheads. This last Park then. Conspicuous in that trick was shocking, but harmless in bright ring of which Charles him- comparison with the other; secluself was the centre stands Villiers sion and rheumatism together must
foremost in beauty, bravery, be intolerable. wit, and gallantry, and every other And Rochester was here too-the dangerously fascinating quality ‘most symmetrical and handsomest which goes to the making up of the man of his age.' He joined that character of the perfect courtier. witty, wicked group, an innocent That Villiers who is described by Adonis and fell away terribly. He Flecknoe as possessing
confessed to Bishop Burnet on his
death-bed that' for five years he had • The gallant'st person and the noblest mind
never been sober.' But as I see In all the world his prince could ever find;'
him in the 'Ring,' walking along and who fell upon evil days and by the side of one of the daintiest died after a long career of splendour of the court dames, he is young and and success in the worst inn's fair and good, as he looks in the worst room,' where, according to only portrait I have seen of him. Pope (although the story is now The long love - locks are not disdenied), ' tawdry yellow strove with hevelled as yet, nor the deep cleardirty red.' That poor 'great Buck- cut eyes glazed, and the lower part ingham,' whom å fastidious king of the face is still exquisitely repronounced to be the only English fined—not heavy and coarse as it gentleman he had ever seen.' And must have grown before those five with Villiers, the oval-faced and years had come to an end. gleaming-eyed — the gay, dashing And chivalrous, daring, happy lord and husband of the “Puritan's Dorset was here; happy because he daughter,' the 'little, short, brown, could do everything, and was never demure' lady, Mary Fairfax; the to blame. And fair, lovely, insipid friend of Cowley, to whom at least, Mrs. Hyde, of the light falling ring
lets and rather weak expression, fades away-fades away and leaves which Sir Peter Lely has handed me standing cold and solitary in down to posterity for admiration. the wintry sunbeams, alone. And the dark queen, with the small Far into the reigns of the Georges brown hands, and long-suffering the Ring continued to be the prespirits. Lovely, foolish Jane Mid- eminently fashionable portion of dleton; the bright brunette, Miss Hyde Park.
William III. gave a Warmestre; and countless others, certain tone to the Kensington who were beauties' in their day, division by going to reside in the redand had names and fames a trifle bricked palace there -- the palace higher than would be awarded them which now has a deeper claim on now. They all came here to the our interest, for there Ring in Hyde Park.
queen was born. And Queen CaroAnd here, too, came one who has line, consort of George II., added to told us more about them and their the attractiveness of this quarter by doings than any one else. Here causing large gardens to be laid out came Pepys-ever-present Samuel there, which were opened to the -of course he did. Following the public—to the full-dressed' public duke' (equally of course) into the -every Sunday, when the king and Park, I found Mr. Coventry's people herself had betaken themselves to had a horse ready for me; so fine a Richmond. When the court ceased one that I was almost afraid to get to reside at Kensington these garupon him, but I did, and found my- dens were thrown open altogether. self more feared than hurt.'
For a long time they retained much Pepys would have risked breaking of their secluded character, but now any number of bones to follow every other portion of the Park will duke,' the brave fellow! The act be thrown into the shade by them of mounting a great fine horse, of in point of gaiety. which he stood in mortal dread, for Wandering along yet further from the pleasure of following the Duke the sounds of busy life, the fleecy of York into the Park and being clouds-half-mist, half-smoke hoverseen in his company by the fine folks ing over everything, show me other in the Ring, is worthy of the gallant scenes and forms. gentleman' who did extend his cha- Here, in later days, came Hervey, rity to his sister Jane by allowing the pleasing refined wit; and Pope, her to be his servant; and who lay the cynical unpleasing one. Lady inómighty trembling,' but cautiously Mary Wortley Montagu'the emancipassive one night, when he thought pated,' who was allowed to say one of his domestics (possibly the anything' (rare privilege !) without aforesaid sister Jane) was being mur- anything being said about herdered in his house. Pepys, with who always dressed becomingly and something beneath him that he untidily and attracted by so doing; dared not hit, must have been a and who, with a keen bright intel‘ mighty fine sight' indeed; as fine lect, had but a 'neat-featured' face, as any in the Ring.
which latter won the regard of both As far as personal appearance Hervey and Pope. goes, Charles I. was far worthier of And those three Marys '—those being the leader of such a bright, ‘maids of honour' about whom so brilliant, beautiful court, than was much has been said and written; his plain, dark-visaged son.
who have been the thread on which Here they all came, powdered and so many fine verses have been strung patched and hooped; with the ever- Mary Lepell herself, Hervey's ready sword and joké, and made love wife, who was good and charming, and witty speeches and quarrels Mary Howard, and jolly’ Mary after the most approved fashion of Bellenden, as she is called. that gay and gallant set.
The amiable king who dreaded And now, as I stand here, the bevy being left alone the night his poor of noble cavaliers and ladies my ima- faithful loving wife died, 'for fear gination has conjured up to peo- he should see a spirit,' came here ple this now-deserted Park with, and sighed that he could not instead
be breathing the air of his own mental career. I see him dimly beloved Hanover. And Caroline through the mists, standing by the herself was by his side of course; visionary rails—not by any means with her fair, comely face, and leaning against them, that would gracious form, and winning sweet have discomposed his attire-and manner; that model wife who ap- hoping every one who passes will pears to have acted with such con- observe the number and gorgeoussistent, judicious humility all ness of his waistcoats. I can forgive through her conjugal life. Before the man who would commit all the king had cause to express that sorts of extravagances in the way of fear and dread, she came here with point lace ruffles, and maroonhim frequently and planned im- coloured velvet coats, because they provements in Hyde Park.
were beautiful and grand, and And the Prince of Wales-their looked well then, and will continue son—was here, but not with them. to look well in pictures through Sir Robert Walpole calls him a all time. But the one who would poor, weak, irresolute, false, lying, ruin himself in table-cloths to wind contemptible wretch ;' and his own around his throat, and several mother the fair comely queen, with coloured waistcoats one over the the gracious manner, seems in his other, and a blue coat with a velvet case to have taken leave of these her collar half hiding his head, and the special qualities of 'gracious sweet- waist indicated by two brass buttons ness,' for she says: ‘Popularity up between his shoulders, is simply always make me sick, but Fritys despicable. makes me vomit. The names Sir And now, as I wander further Robert Walpole called him must south on towards those quieter have been hard to bear, yet that Kensington regions—the gray mist sentence from his mother's lips seems to clear away. The trees was surely harder.
burst forth into leaf. In the years between 1798 and shines fully, gloriously over every1816, Beau Brum and his set thing, and somewhere high in the adorned the Park. He came here upper air an invisible lark is pourfrequently-did the kind beau-to ing forth a wild sweet melody. show inferior beings how friends- It is the summer season of 1861, old friends—and new coats should and here are assembled representabe cut. He was as perfect in these tives of all classes-of'all' save the noble arts as was the friend of his stout peasantry' of England, who early days, the Prince Regent, whose with quilted ‘smocks,' and heavy, countenance he lost through an im- weather-reddened complexions, have pertinence. Many mean, base, weak no call, find no place here. Poverty and worthless ones, I doubt not, take and wretchedness come here often a turn in Hyde Park daily through- enough to look at their betters, out the season, but surely none so but it is not 'rural' poverty and weak, base, mean and worthless as wretchedness. this dethroned idol of what were Here
the world-famed called the ‘Bucks '-as this man minister, the wise and witty stateswho spent half of every day in tying man on whom the years that he has his cravat, and the other half in passed in the public service tell so showing the world-his world-how slightly to all outward seeming; it should be tied. He is not a who holds with equal judgment and pleasing object to contemplate skill the reins of government and through the fleecy clouds of time. those which restrain the eager footNothing worthier is recorded of him steps of a fine-drawn high-couraged -that I can recal -- than that he Irish mare. The author, favourite asked “for damson jam tart' when of fortune and fashion. The artist, little more than a baby ; 'Who is seeking as he leans idly over those your fat friend ?' when full-grown; rails for a face fairer than his ideal, and several ridiculous questions as with which to delight the world to cabbage and peas at different next year at the Academy. The stages of his highly useful and orna- beauty, whose roses are paled a