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mistaken, and the acceptance by the gentle and the prosperous classes of their Irish responsibilities-to Ireland as a whole. The seventy years since 1848 should have enabled a united Irish people to echo Davis's fervid words:
"What matter that at different shrines
We pray unto one God?
What matter that at different times
Your fathers won this sod?
In fortune and in name we're bound
And neither can be safe and sound
J. L. MORISON.
CAUSERIE ON BOOKS.
OME years ago a literary pundit said that if he were a University examiner in English, he would ask but one question: if the examinees knew that, they would know all; if not, they knew nothing. The question was: Who was Lydia White? There was a hurried rush by other pundits, and no doubt Professors of English, to works of reference to find out who Lydia White was. She proved to be a bluestocking at whose tea-table the wits and poets of the Regency gathered like bluebottles. She was the author of at least one passable jest. Seeing her the sole Tory in a group of Whigs, Sydney Smith exclaimed: 'Shall we sacrifice a Tory virgin?' to which Lydia replied, 'Oh; the Whigs would do anything to raise the wind,' which at least proves that she knew her classics.
This 'Notes and Queries' kind of question is probably not worse than a question that calls for the student's impression of the professor's impression of a poem or play. If one had to measure the current of English letters at the end, say, of the reign of George II, could one do better than ask: Who was Mr. John Newbery, and what did he do? Without that bustling, pimple-faced little man, English literature might have lost some masterpieces, and who knows whether Oliver Goldsmith woul dhave died of starvation or survived the fever that killed him? Between the patron and the gaol, there stood for the 18th century writer-the publisher; and Newbery was no bad specimen of his class. I write away from books of reference, but a small personal incident has revived my interest in Mr. Newbery. I venture to hope that it may be shared by some readers of the Quarterly.
John Newbery was the son of a Berkshire farmer, and oddly enough the descendant of a bookseller of renown under Elizabeth, who published Hakluyt, Holinshed, and Stow. He went to Reading where he played the industrious apprentice, and married his master's widow. While his business was printing, he engaged in any traffic to turn an honest penny,
and in a few years moved to St. Paul's Churchyard in London. It was this step that brought Newbery into contact with Dr. Johnson, Goldsmith, and other great men. The best and most amusing picture of his character has been left to us by Dr. Johnson. We must quote part of it, if only as a specimen of that nervous English which Johnson could write.
'Jack's cheerfulness and civility rank him among those whose presence never gives pain, and whom all receive with fondness and caresses. He calls often on his friends to tell them he will come again to-morrow; on the morrow he comes again to tell them how an unexpected summons hurries him away. When he enters a house his first declaration is that he cannot sit down; and so short are his visits that he seldom appears to have come for any other reason but to say he must go..
'But, overwhelmed as he is with business, his chief desire is to have still more. Every new proposal takes possession of his thoughts; he soon balances probabilities, engages in the project, brings it almost to completion, and then forsakes it for another, which he catches with the same alacrity, hugs with the same vehemence, and abandons with the same coldness.
'Every man may be observed to have a certain strain of lamentation, some peculiar theme of complaint on which he dwells in moments of dejection. Jack's topic of sorrow is the want of time. Many an excellent design languishes in empty theory for want of time.
"Thus Jack Whirler lives in perpetual fatigue, without proportionate advantage, because he does not consider that no man can see all with his own eyes or do all with his own hands; that whoever is engaged in multiplicity of business must transact much by substitution and have something to hazard, and that he who attempts to do all will waste his life in doing little.'
Such in friendly caricature was this publisher, whose brain was always teeming with new ideas. In his memoranda of books to be published, we find for example proposals to print 'a plain and rational vindication and explanation of the Liturgy of the Church of England revised and corrected by a clergyman for the benefit of the Poor of the Church of England' all for one shilling, 'a proper book for zealous Christians to give their poor neighbours'-this side by side with
the Alcoran of Mahomet with 'notes on the extravagances thereof' and a copperplate of the view of Yarmouth with a proper description of its large mouth, large cavities and great harbour. The town and citadel clothed in hoop petticoats, Madam Valmodon’. This last proposal of course is an attempt to exploit the contemporary honours scandal. Lady Yarmouth was the last king's mistress to be ennobled for her easy virtue, just as no doubt Lord X. will prove to be the last peer ennobled for no reason but his easy virtue in gaining wealth and the singular judgement he displayed in distributing it. Of all John Newbery's projects, however, we like the best that in which he prints a marriage sermon written by a bride anxious to have the first word:
"To print a sermon preached at the wedding of the Lady Eliz.- by her Ladyship's desire from the following words: Hebrews, chap. 13, verse 4.
"Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled; but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge."
'Wrote by her Ladyship, and preached by her order on the day of her nuptials.'
Before, however, we touch on the provision made by John Newbery for the souls of his fellow countrymen, it is fitting to recall what he did for their bodies. His medicines brought him more fame than his books, not to say more money. It was the patent medicines and not the classics that enabled his son Francis to set up as a country gentleman. Here are some of the remedies that our forefathers' sturdy constitutions managed to resist: Doctor Steer's Oil For Convulsions, Mrs. Norton's Mordant Drops, Greenough's Lozenges of Tolu, Arquebusade Water, Angola Ptisan, Unguents de Cao,1 Hungary Balsam, the Cordial Cephalic Snuff (a valuable property this), Dalby's Carminative Mixture, and-most famous of all-Dr. James's Fever Powders. When the young Pretender was retreating north to his final overthrow, a momentous agreement was signed in London between Robert James, physician, and John Newbery, bookseller. 'For twenty-one years to make his pills for the gout, rheumatism, king's evil,
1The basis of this preparation was a 'good fat young dog' boiled in two gallons of water.
scurfy, and leprosy, and to sell them to J. Newbery for 8d. per box, each box containing two pills-one pill a dose, and his fever powder at 8d. per box, each containing two doses.' No, Lydia White's tea-table is not the best test of a knowledge of English literature. Far better ask: Who took Dr. James's powders? With Bishop Berkeley's Tar Water, itself the starting point of a profound metaphysic, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu's inoculation against smallpox, (token of the new interest in the East), and this notable febrifuge, how deeply should we not penetrate into the thought, history and literature of the eighteenth century. There is every reason to believe that Newbery had firm faith in his property; for he administered it in large doses to his brother's 'Horned Cattel' for distemper. But the faith was widespread and deep among men of intelligence like Horace Walpole who wrote: 'James's Powder is my panacea; that is, it always shall be, for, thank God, I am not apt to have occasion for medicines; but I have such faith in these powders that I believe I should take [them] if the house were on fire.' To this rather double-edged tribute from the man of the world, we may add that of Christopher Smart, who deemed it not incongruous to dedicate his Hymn to the Supreme Being to Dr. James! The dedication begins as follows:
'Having made an humble offering to Him, without Whose blessing your skill, admirable as it is, would have been to no purpose, I think myself bound, by all the ties of gratitude, to render my next acknowledgment to you, who, under God, restored me to health from as violent and dangerous a disorder as perhaps ever man survived. And my thanks become more particularly your just tribute, since this was the third time that your judgement and medicines rescued me from the grave, permit me to say, in a manner almost miraculous.'
After this lofty strain it is an anticlimax to mention that Kit Smart was married to Newbery's step-daughter. The most eminent votary-if not martyr-of these Powders, however, was Oliver Goldsmith. It will always be a nice point whether he died after taking Dr. James's Powders or another 'just as good.' As he grew worse, and the powders given to him failed of their effect, he exclaimed, 'D-n that Hawes, I