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what I would have ? So looking back I espied him just creeping out of a wicker bottle. It seems by his profession he was a wicker bottle maker. And after he had made them, he crept out at the stopper holes.

It is said that the Rev. Thomas Kerrich, the well-known librarian of the University of Cambridge, could repeat by heart the whole of the eight and forty pages of this strange gallimawfrey.


Some years since I copied from a MS. vol., compiled before 1708, the following effusions of a Jacobite poet, who seems to have been “ a good hater” of King William. I have made ineffectual efforts to discover the witty author, or to ascertain if these compositions have ever been printed. My friend, in whose waste-book I found them—a beneficed clergyman in Worcestershire, who has been several years dead-obtained them from a college friend during the last century.



'Twill puzzle much the author's brains,

That is to write your story,
To know in which of these campagnes

Yo'ı have acquired most glory;
For when you march'd the foe to fight,

Like Heroe, nothing fearing,
Namur was taken in your sight,

And Mons within your hearing.


Cease, Hippocrites, to trouble heaven,
How can ye think to be forgiven

The dismal deed you've done ?
When to the martyr's sacred blood,
This very moment, if you could,

You'd sacrifice his son.


Rejoice, yee fops, yor idoll's come agen
To pick yo" pocketts, and to slay yo' men;
Give him yo' millions, and his Dutch yo' lands;
Don't ring yobells, yee fools, but wring yor hands.



In Lilly's History of his Life and Times, is the following interesting account in regard to the vizored execution of Charles I., being part of the evidence he gave when examined before the first parliament of King Charles II. respecting the matter :

Liberty being given me to speak, I related what follows, viz. : That the next Sunday but one after Charles I. was beheaded, Robert Spavin, Secretary to Lieutenant-general Cromwell at that time, invited himself to dine with me, , and brought Anthony Pearson and several others along with him to dinner. That their principal discourse all dinner time was only who it was that beheaded the Kiny. One said it was the common hangman; another, Hugh Peters; others were also nominated, but none concluded. Robert Spavin, as soon as dinner was done, took me by the hand, and carried me to the south window. Saith he, " They are all mistaken; they have not named the man that did the fact: it was Lieutenant-colonel Joice. I was in the room when he fitted himself for the work ; stood behind him when he did it; when done, went in with him again : there is no man knows this but my master, viz., Cromwell, Commissary Ireton, and myself.” “Doth Mr. Rushworth know it?” saith I. “No, he doth not know it,” saith Spavin. The same thing Spavin since has often related to me, when we were alone.


" And ten low words creep on in one dull line." Most ingenious ! most felicitous ! but let no man despise little words, despite of the little man of Twickenham. He himself knew better, but there was no resisting the temptation of such a line as that. Small words, he says, in plain prosaic criticism, are generally “stiff and languishing, but they may be beautiful to express melancholy."

The English language is a language of small words. It is, says Swift, "overstocked with monosyllables." It cuts down all its words to the shortest possible dimensions: a sort of half-Procrustes, which lops but never stretches. In one of the most magnificent passages in Holy Writ, that, namely, which describes the death of Sisera :

At her feet he bowed, he fell : at her feet he bowed, he fell, he lay down; where he bowed, there he fell down dead.

There are twenty-two monosyllables to three of greater length, or rather to the same dissyllable thrice repeated; and that, too, in common parlance pronounced as a monosyllable. The passage in the Book of Ezekiel, which Coleridge is said to have considered the most sublime in the whole Bible,

And He said unto me, son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord God, thou knowest,

contains seventeen monosyllables to three others. And in that most grand passage which commences the Gospel of St. John, from the first to the fourteenth verses, inclusive, there are polysyllables twenty-eight, monosyllables two hundred and one. This, it may be said, is poetry, but not verse, and therefore makes but little against the critic. Well, then, out of his own mouth shall he be confuted. In the fourth epistle of his Essay on Man, a specimen selected purely at Random from his works, and extending altogether to three hundred and ninety-eight lines, there are no less than twenty-seven (that is, a trifle more than one out of every fifteen) made up entirely of monosyllables: and over and above these, there are one hundred and fifteen which have in them only one word of greater length; and yet there are few dull creepers among the lines of Pope.

The early writers, the “pure wells of English undefiled," are full of " small words."

Hall, in one of the most exquisite of his satires, speaking of the vanity of “adding house to house, and field to field,” has these most beautiful lines :

Fond fool! six feet shall serve for all thy store,
And he that cares for most shall find no more!


“What harmonious monosyllables !” says Mr. Gifford; and what critic will refuse to echo his exclamation ?

The same writer is full of monosyllabic lines, and he is among the most energetic of satirists. By the way, it is not a little curious that in George Webster's White Devil, or Vittoria Corombona, almost the same thought is also clothed in two monosyllabic lines :

His wealth is summ'd, and this is all his store :

This poor men get, and great men get no more. Was Young dull ? Listen, for it is indeed a "solemn sound : "

The bell strikes one. We take no note of time
Save by its loss; to give it then a tongue

Was wise in man.
Was Milton tame? Hear the “ lost archangel" calling upon
Hell to receive its new possessor :-

One who brings
A mind not to be chang'd by place or time,
The mind is in its own place, and in itself
Can make a heav'n of hell,-a hell of heav'n.
What matter where, if I be still the same,
And what I should be ; all but less than he
Whom thunder hath made greater ? Here at least
We shall be free; the Almighty hath not built
Here for his envy; will not drive us hence :
Here we may reign secure ; and in my choice
To reign is worth ambition, though in hell:
Better to reign in hell, than serve in heavn!

A great conjunction of little words !. Are monosyllables passionless ? Listen to the widowed Constance :

Thou may’st, thou shalt! I will not go with thee!
I will instruct my sorrows to be proud;
For grief is proud, and makes his owner stout;
To me, and to the state of my great grief,
Let kings assemble ; for my grief's so great,
That no supporter but the huge firm earth
Can hold it up; here I and sorrow sit;
Here is my throne: bid kings come bow to it.

Six polysyllables only in eight lines !
Hear Lear :-

Lear. Thou know'st the first time that we smell the air, We wawl, and cry :- I will preach to thee; mark me.

[Gloster. Alack! alack the day !]

Lear. When we are born, we cry, that we are come To this great stage of fools.--This a good block ?-King Lear, Act IV. Sc. 6.

In this passage [I bracket Gloster] we find no fewer than forty-two monosyllables following each other consecutively. In King John, Act III. Sc. 3, where the king is pausing in his wish to incense Hubert to Arthur's murder, he says :

Good friend, thou hast no cause to say so yet:
But thou shalt have; and creep time ne'er so slow,
Yet it shall come, for me to do thee good.

I had a thing to say,--But let it go :-
forty monosyllables.
Again :-

but through his lips do throng Weak words, so thick come, in his poor heart's aid, That no man could distinguish what he said.

Rape af Lucreece, Stanza 255. In Beaumont and Fletcher's Boadicea, Act III. Sc. 1 (Edinburgh, 1812), are the following lines in Caratach's Apostrophe to

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