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air, occasioned by their fall, is sometimes so prodigious as to overturn cottages, and knock down men at a considerable distance from the spot where the avalanche has fallen. 3d. The third species of avalanche, that of the summer and autumn, is such as we saw falling from the Jungfrau-an object of admiration and interest, but seldom attended with danger.

If the first distant view of the light and ethereal Alps waving along the elevated blue horizon, "so massive yet so shadowy, so ethereal as to belong rather to heaven than earth,"-if this is lovely and enchanting, the close observation of their awe-inspiring features-the beauty of their silent snows-the grace of their spiral pinnacles-the rugged severity of their glaciers and precipices, and the sullen roar of the avalanche, convey impressions to the mind, of which no description can give the faintest shadow. Who ever has seen them

But instantly receives into his soul

A sense, a feeling that he loses not,

A something that informs him 'tis a moment
Whence he may date henceforward and for ever?

We mounted our horses and proceeded reluctantly down the gentle descent of the Wengern Alp towards the valley of Grindelwald-the enormous snows and heights of the Eiger mountains rising like a rampart on our right. These mountains are little inferior in height to the Jungfrau, but are far inferior in beauty of form-the Eigers forming a uniform ridge without variety for several leagues. Their greatest height is about 12,268 feet-while that of the Jungfrau is 12,872. Both are inaccessible from the extreme rapidity of their summits. The point of the Jungfrau (Jungfrau-horn-virgin-peak) appears to the eye pointed as a lancet. The green valley of Grindelwald now lay low beneath us at a distance of about four leagues, and the fatigue of our ascent well disposed us, as well as our horses and guides, to halt for half an hour at a little log-built châlet on the side of the declivity. The cowherds lighted a wood-fire (for in these elevations the air is extremely piercing), and provided us with excellent cream, cheese, and curds. The cows and goats were browsing about the steep pastures round the chalet, and a fine shaggy dog was stretched by the door. During the summer season, while the cattle are on the mountains, the cowherds follow their fate like the shepherds of Virgil:

Sæpe diem noctemque, et totum ex ordine mensem
Pascitur itque pecus longa in deserta sine ullis
Hospitiis: tantum campi jacet.

The last words seem to intimate that a châlet was a luxury to which the Libyan flocks and herdsmen were strangers; and if we were to believe Rousseau's lovely description, it is a place more fitted for the abode of romantic lovers than for a night-stall for cows and goats. The passage is one of the most poetical, and the least true in all his writings. "Près des coteaux fleuris d'ou part la source de la Vevaise, il est un hameau solitaire qui sert quelquefois de repaire aux chasseurs, et ne devroit servir que d'asile aux amants. Autour de l'habitation principale sont épars assez loin quelques châlets qui de leurs toits de chaume peuvent couvrir l'amour et le plaisir, amis de la simplicité rustique.' Nothing indeed can exceed the general beauty of their positions; stuck on the sides of mountain-pastures-on the edge of precipices and

cataracts-embosomed in chesnut-groves, or sheltered by the tall black firs of the mountain. The building itself is a large low square mass composed of rude half-hewn timbers mortised together, the roof covered with timber or slate, with large pieces of rock and stone laid on the top to keep the roof fast. The interior is fitted up with shelves and dairy utensils-wooden-bowls, churns, ladles, &c. hang round with cleanliness and convenience. The milk, butter, laitage and cheese are worthy of the Alps-of a delicacy and richness which lowland pastures never equal. After making a hearty repast at the châlet on the Wengern Alp, we descended to Grindelwald, where we arrived towards evening, and saw the snows of the Eiger and the Wetterhorn, tinted and emblazoned by all the purple and roseate hues of a splendid setting sun.

D.

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MR. EDITOR.-There are very few appellatives which were originally used in a bad signification: and none, perhaps, at the epoch of their formation were considered as indecent. It is the nature of things and the perversity of the human imagination which convert the most innocent arrangements of letters and syllables into offence: and when a word is driven out of good company, with the etymology of which I am unacquainted, I am strongly tempted to exclaim with Bardolf, "By this day, I know not the phrase, but I will maintain the word with my sword to be a soldier-like word, and a word of exceeding good command."

We know that some of the coarsest terms in our language were formerly used in good society, and that many ideas which we are now forced to insinuate by the most roundabout periphrases, were expressed by our ancestors in very plain English. Etymology teaches us that "Villain" meant originally a country fellow; and Knave, Harlot, and Varlet, were simply designations of serving-men.

He was a gentle harlot and a kynde,

A better fellow shulde a man nat fynde.

CHAUCER.

So likewise "Tyrant" and "Despot" originally implied no bad quality in the person that bore them, and indicated merely the sort of authority they exercised. But as serving-men were, in rerum natura, prone to indulge in little peccadilloes*, and despots and tyrants to amuse themselves with great ones, the influence of things determined the associations of ideas; and neither of the parties felt particularly flattered by hearing themselves addressed in terms which raked up by their very sound all the evil doings of their predecessors.

Some words have suffered great varieties of fortune, and have figured with very various effect in conversation. "Marechal," for example, which was originally a master of the horse, has risen to be a commander-in-chief, and sunk again into a tipstaff and a blacksmith. So its

* "Notum est," says Skinner," servos, tum apud Græcos tum Romanos, pro nebulonibus, sceleratis, et nequam hominibus, semper etiam proverbio tenus, habitos fuisse."-From which we may collect, that, in all ages, the upper classes have first degraded the lower, and then insulted them.

twin-brother "Constable" has enjoyed high military command, and has subsided into a mere peace-officer. "Knight" also has "in its time played many parts." This word seems to have set out in life as a hired servant, or one knit and attached to another.*"In all places I shall be, my lady, your daughter's servant and knight in right and wrong."+ But having enlisted for a soldier, he rose rapidly to great consideration, which he sustained as long as he stuck to the sword. The moment, however, that he treads on a carpet, his character becomes very equivocal, and he is only to be known by the company he keeps. He seldom goes into the city without becoming the butt of ridicule, whether he deserves it or no. Some of his family, called Peg Nicholson's knights, were notoriously ill spoken of; but the worst of his name are, unquestionably, the knights of the post.

In the present day, a careful observer will discover many words which are in a state of migration, and stand just upon the confines of good and evil, of honour and reproach. Dr. Johnson apologized, and defended himself from the imputation of backbiting, when he called a man, not then present, an "Attorney." Those of the craft prefer hearing themselves styled Solicitors : for what reason I could never discover, unless it be that the word has a more sonorous twang, or because solicitation is a courtly employment, and the high road to places and dignities.

"Methodist," which a few years ago was used as a reproach, has been adopted as an honorific distinction by those to whom it was applied; and the same is the case with "Radical." "Blasphemy" and "Sedition," as some people assert, are undergoing a similar process; insomuch that, to discover a man's meaning in employing such words, we must first know something of his political opinions.-"Saint," on the contrary, is now growing more and more exclusively applicable in a bad sense, and the imputation will be soon absolutely rejected as calumnious. "Laureate," likewise, may be cited as a word that is running down hill as fast as it can go; and I should not be surprised, if we should yet live to hear of a man's nose being pulled, as a "reproof valiant" for this "churlish" imputation. There are more Corinnas in the world than Petrarchs, and more Pyes and Cibbers than Drydens and Wartons; and the license of writing bad verses on an indifferent subject is hard to be resisted. But, whatever may be the cause, ruimus in pejus, and the post of laureate is not, even now-a-days, an euthanasia poetica, but rather a sort of poetical pillory, exposing a man to all sorts of pelters, from Byron to Cobbett. Not but that the present laureate, like Cicero, suffers more for his politics than his poetry; and might have written his O fortunatam natam hexameters, as safely as Pye sang of sonnets and thrushes §, had he kept clear of Wat Tyler,

* Horne Tooke.

+ Historie of Prince Arthur.

The same Dr. Johnson, on being asked the difference between an attorney and a solicitor, replied, much the same as between a crocodile and an alligator.

§ Pye's first Laureate Ode was said to have run much on singing-birds, which produced the following allusive quotation :

"And when the pie was opened, the birds began to sing,
"And was not that a dainty dish to set before a king?"

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and the Quarterly Review: the changes of measures which ruined him were not wholly poetical.

Upon the merits and demerits of "Patriot," it is useless to insist : from Russell to John Wilkes, was "a heavy declension." In fact, however, the thing itself is a bore: a patriot is an animal whose principles are as old-fashioned as his clothes; and like himself, they lose in consideration principally by being out of place. In the present state of society, a patriot must be half a note above concert pitch, and therefore, of necessity must spoil the harmony which prevails where interest and servility reduce all instruments to the same key. But what more particularly affects the fortunes of the word is, that persecution can make any thing a patriot. In this the attorney-general operates like the hangman :-

"The youth in his cart hath the air of a lord,

And we cry, there dies an Adonis.”

It is not then very surprising that this word should, like the chameleon, take its colour from surrounding objects; and change its signification with every fresh subject with which it comes in contact: it is thus that in Ireland, Patriot resolves itself into the syllabic elements of Pat-Riot.

"Courtier," and "Courtesan," though brother and sister, have met with very different fortunes in the world: for though the idea of prostitution has somehow or other mixed itself up with both, yet the lady's calling is much the most disreputable in public opinion.

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Nothing can be clearer, and more intimately felt than the ideas of good and evil, yet a good man," or rather a good sort of a man,” is a very doubtful character. His description is a mere bundle of negations: he is a minus quantity in morals, a substance without accidents. In general the appellation is applied to men of whom nothing else can be said. Sometimes it is used as an extenuating salvo for public delinquents, as when we are desired to hold a man excused, who has ruined his country, because he is "a good sort of man" in private life as if it were necessary that a man should starve his children, and beat his wife, in order to be a bad minister.

The value of this word varies something with the latitude and longitude of the place where it is used. A good man in the city, may be a very bad man in all other regions; and many things which are good in law, are either wicked or absurd beyond the precincts of the Temple and Lincoln's Inn.

But of all the pests of society, keep me from a "good sort of woman." How she torments her servants! how she plagues her husband! how she interferes with her neighbours! and, worst of all, what a wet blanket she is in society! A good sort of woman has neither wit nor wisdom, charity, taste, nor good-nature. She is so candid, that she will excuse all faults in those who have the world's protection; and she is so pure and immaculate, that she can find nothing in favour of those whom the world pursues. A good sort of woman has seldom an opinion of her own, but she has a ready and an infallible instinct in selecting those she adopts from the safe side of the question. A good sort of woman, as she is generally placed above the wants of her species, so she is exempt from its sympathies; and if she rarely sinks into a crime, she never rises to a virtue.

But the most singular use of the word "good" is that which is uni

formly taken as conveying an insult: I mean the addressing a person by the appellation of "good man," or "good woman." good woman." What these words strictly convey, it would be, perhaps, difficult to say; but it must be presumed that the innuendo is very base, since it excites so great a degree of indignation where it is applied. In France, Bonhommie conveys an insinuation of folly or dupery not very creditable to the morality of the country; since it implies that simplicity of character has no chance in society-that chi non sa fingere non sa vivere—and that not to deceive others is, like playing a fair game with sharpers, to strip yourself and ruin your children. A fripon fripon et demi is, therefore, the standard of morality of all who are not born idiots, and bon homme is equivalent to cuckold or gull.

In England, however, this is not the case: good man and good woman signify rather (as far as the phrase is intelligible) vagabond, rascal, one of the dregs of the people. By which we plainly see, that if "the quality" have not abandoned all notion that goodness is a part of greatness, at least their inferiors think so. Yet if any one doubts that the china ware of God's creation do really calumniate themselves by agreeing with the crockery in this notion, he has only to ask himself what would be the consequence of calling a gentleman good man:"Odds pistols and triggers!" there would be no avoiding a duel. Indeed, I would not advise a peaceable man to call even a fish-wife "good woman;" he had better call her a at once. The Athenians, who

were a very sensitive if not always a very sensible people, were much alive to verbal distinctions; they would not endure even that a prison should be called by its proper name; although, if Aristophanes be taken as a witness against them, they had no objection to calling a spade a spade. The English, who (in virtue, I suppose, of their free government) imitate the Greeks in so many particulars, are daily approaching them in this delicacy. What a quarrel would a man get into who talked of Ducks on the Stock Exchange; or if, in the other Exchange he happened to call Accommodation (which is a good word and comes of accommodo) flying kites! Revolution is sixty-four per cent., a worse word than it was thirty years ago; Reform has wholly fallen into disrepute; and, as things are going, even Religion itself is in danger of losing its character. The French have a dictionary of revolutionary neologisms, and we are daily more and more in want of a book of the same sort. In a short time I hope to be enabled to lay a specimen of such a work before the public, by which we may have our tongues, like our hair, "cut in the newest fashion," and speak in words as well starched as our cravats. I therefore beseech the reader not to judge of the author of this paper, by the paper itself; but to take him, on the faith of his own word, till further notice-for "a very proper spoken gentleman," with which prayer, for the present, I. heartily bid him farewell.

M.

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