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which sets him above you in an instant, as a sort of patronising wit, who can dispense with the necessity of joking.

At the same time, to give it its due zest in life, a stick has its inconveniences. If you have yellow gloves on, and drop it in the mud, a too hasty recovery is awkward. To have it stick between the stones of a pavement is not pleasant, especially if it snap the ferule off; or more especially if an old gentleman or lady is coming behind you, and after making them start back with winking eyes, it threatens to trip them up. To lose the ferule on a country road, renders the end liable to the growth of a sordid brush, which, not having a knife with you, or a shop in which to borrow one, goes pounding the wet up against your legs. In a crowded street you may have the stick driven into a large pane of glass; upon which an unthinking tradesman, utterly indifferent to a chain of events, issues forth and demands twelve and sixpence.


Of the Sight of Shops.

THOUGH We are such lovers of the country, we can admire London in some points of view; and among others, from the entertainment to be derived from its shops. Their variety and brilliancy can hardly fail of attracting the most sluggish attention : and besides reasons of this kind, we can never look at some of them without thinking of the gallant figure they make in the Arabian Nights, with their Bazaars and Bezesteins; where the most beautiful of unknowns goes shopping in a veil, and the most graceful of drapers is taken blindfold to see her. He goes, too, smitten at heart to think of the danger of his head; and finds her seated among her slaves (exquisite themselves, only very inferior), upon which she encourages him to sit near her, and lutes are played; upon which he sighs, and cannot help looking tenderly; upon which she claps her hands, and a charming collation is brought in; upon which they eat, but not much. A dance ensues, and the ocular sympathy is growing tenderer, when an impossible old woman appears, and says that the Sultan is coming. Alas! How often have we been waked up, in the person of the young draper or jeweller, by that ancient objection! How have we received the lady in the veil, through which we saw nothing but her dark eyes and rosy cheeks! How have we sat cross-legged on cushions, hearing or handling the lute, whose sounds faded away like our enamored eyes! How often have we not lost our hearts and left-hands, like one of the Calendars? Or an eye, like another? Or a head; and resumed it at the end of the story? Or slept (no, not slept) in the Sultan's garden at Schiraz with the fair Persian.

But to return (as well as such enamored persons can) to our shops. We prefer the country a million times over for walking

in generally, especially if we have the friends in it that enjoy it as well; but there are seasons when the very streets may vie with it. If you have been solitary, for instance, for a long time, it is pleasant to get among your fellow-creatures again, even to be jostled and elbowed. If you live in town, and the weather is showery, you may get out in the intervals of rain, and then a quickly-dried pavement and a set of brilliant shops are pleasant. Nay, we have known days, even in spring, when a street shall outdo the finest aspects of the country; but then it is only when the ladies are abroad, and there happens to be a run of agreeable faces that day. For whether it is fancy or not, or whether certain days do not rather bring out certain people, it is a common remark, that one morning you shall meet a succession of good looks, and another encounter none but the reverse. We do not merely speak of handsome faces; but of those which are charming, or otherwise, whatever be the cause. We suppose, that the money-takers are all abroad one day, and the hearttakers the other.

It is to be observed, that we are not speaking of utility in this article, except indeed the great utility of agreeableness. A candid leather-cutter therefore will pardon us, if do we not find anything very attractive in his premises. So will his friend the shoemaker, who is bound to like us rural pedestrians. A stationer too, on obvious accounts, will excuse us for thinking his a very dull and bald-headed business. We cannot bear the horribly neat monotony of his shelves, with their load of virgin paper, their slates and slate pencils that set one's teeth on edge, their pocket-books, and above all, their detestable ruled accountbooks, which at once remind one of the necessity of writing, and the impossibility of writing anything pleasant on such pages. The only agreeable thing, in a stationer's shop when it has it, is the ornamental work, the card-racks, hand-screens, &c., which remind us of the fair morning fingers that paste and gild such things, and surprise their aunts with presents of flowery boxes. But we grieve to add, that the prints which the stationers furnish for such elegancies, are not in the very highest taste. They are apt to deviate too scrupulously from the originals. Their well-known heads become too anonymous. Their young

ladies have casts in their eyes, a little too much on one side even for the sidelong divinities of Mr. Harlowe.


In a hatter's shop we can see nothing but the hats; and the reader is acquainted with our pique against them. The beaver is a curious animal, but the idea of it is not entertaining enough to convert a window full of those requisite nuisances into an agreeable spectacle. It is true, a hatter, like some other tradesmen, may be pleasanter himself, by reason of the adversity of his situation. We cannot say more for the cruel-shop next door, a name justly provocative of a pun. It is customary, however, to have sign-paintings of Adam and Eve at these places; which is some relief to the monotony of the windows; only they remind us but too well of these cruel necessities to which they brought The baker's next ensuing is a very dull shop, much inferior to the gingerbread baker's, whose parliament we used to munch at school. The tailor's makes one as melancholy to look at it, as the sedentary persons within. The hosier's is worse; particularly if it has a Golden Leg over it; for that precious limb is certainly not symbolical of the weaver's. The windows, half board and half dusty glass, which abound in the City, can scarcely be turned to a purpose of amusement, even by the most attic of dry-salters. We own we have half a longing to break them, and let in the light of nature upon their recesses; whether they belong to those more piquant gentlemen, or to bankers, or any other high and wholesale personages. A light in one of these windows in the morning is, to us, one of the very dismallest reflections on humanity. We wish we could say something for a tallow-chandler's, because everybody abuses it; but we cannot. It must bear its fate like the man. A good deal might be said in behalf of candle-light; but in passing from shop to shop, the variety is so great, that the imagination has not time to dwell on any one in particular. The ideas they suggest must be obvious and on the surface. A grocer's and tea-dealer's is a good thing. It fills the mind instantly with a variety of pleasant tastes, as the ladies in Italy on certain holidays pelt the gentlemen with sweetmeats. An undertaker's is as great a baulk to one's spirits, as a loose stone to one's foot. It gives one a deadly jerk. But it is pleasant upon the whole

to see the inhabitant looking carelessly out of doors, or hammering while humming a tune; for why should he die a death at every fresh order for a coffin? An undertaker walking merrily drunk by the side of a hearse, is a horrid object; but an undertaker singing and hammering in his shop, is only rapping death himself on the knuckles. The dead are not there; the altered fellow-creature is not there; but only the living man, and the abstract idea of death; and he may defy that as much as he pleases. An apothecary's is the more deadly thing of the two; for the coffin may be made for a good old age, but the draught and the drug are for the sickly. An apothecary's looks well, however, at night-time, on account of the colored glasses. It is curious to see two or three people talking together in the light of one of them, and looking profoundly blue. There are two good things in the Italian warehouse, its name and its olives; but it is chiefly built up of gout. Nothing can be got out of a brazier's windows, except by a thief: but we understand that it is a good place to live at for those who cannot procure water-falls. A music-shop with its windows full of titlepages, is provokingly insipid to look at, considering the quantity of slumbering enchantment inside, which only wants waking. A bookseller's is interesting, especially if the books are very old or very new, and have frontispieces. But let no author, with or without money in his pocket, trust himself in the inside, unless, like the bookseller, he has too much at home. An author is like a baker; it is for him to make the sweets, and others to buy and enjoy them. And yet not so. Let us not blaspheme the “divinity that stirs within us.' The old comparison of the bee is better; for even if his toil at last is his destruction, and he is killed in order to be plundered, he has had the range of nature before he dies. His has been the summer air, and the sunshine, and the flowers; and gentle ears have listened to him, and gentle eyes have been upon him. Let others eat his honey that please, so that he has had his morsel and his song.—A book-stall is better for an author than a regular shop; for the books are cheaper, the choice often better and more ancient; and he may look at them, and move on without the horrors of not buying anything; unless indeed the master or mistress stands looking at

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