Our correspondents have made our long vacation a season not of idleness but of industry, and the Chest is so abundantly stored that we have found great difficulty in determining not what to select, but what to reject.
The contributions from Positive House are so conspicuous, both by number and excellence, as to do honour to the doctrine of electrical inspiration. We have already on hand three Prize Essays and a drama, all of considerable length, but from the pressure of other matter, unavoidably postponed. We have selected for the present evening two letters, one from Mr. Beauclerc and the other from Sir Pertinax Townly, descriptive of a rather ill-natured hoax played upon the latter by Mr. Scriblerus Junr. but apparently with the privity and approval of Mr. Beauclerc. How far a participation in such mischief agrees with the high character given of that gentleman by Electromagus, we will not at present stop to enquire, but the scene is well described and the after-conversation recorded by Sir Pertinax affords a good example how much a preconceived idea can distort the meaning of words. The Fairy Gossipia’s song is very elegant, but we think it required all Sir Pertinax’s vanity to discover an invitation in it. We have received a copy of it with the music, as set we suppose by the fair Authoress and adorned with her own portrait in the bosom of a rose.
The Lover’s Calendar for the year 1815 comes rather late in consequence of the long cessation of our meetings; but we trust that Augustus will still find his lovely Barometer disposed to reward him by favorable indications.
On Monday last we received some French verses signed Zaire apparently in answer to a Valentine and accompanied by a note requesting the Editress to convey them to Orosmane. Not being personally acquainted with this superb hero, we destined the verses for the Chest, thinking that perhaps he might be present in disguise; but this morning we were agreeably surprised by receiving from an unknown hand two stanzas signed Orosmane, which from their date we suppose to be those to which the lovely Zaire replies. We fear that the task imposed upon us, of making her refusal agreeable to Orosmane, may be rather difficult, but perhaps he may be cheered by the reflection, that as her own youth is the chief objection she appears to have, it is one that will diminish every day.
We have also a Valentine to Olivia signed Philemon, which we suspect to be spurious.
We are obliged to our anonymous correspondent for the first number of the Sonnetteer, which we hope will not prove the last. We are particularly pleased with the Translation from the Italian of Salandri, and the original sonnet entitled A Morning Thought.
The Memoirs of a Ridicule given in our last number, containing a lamentation over the declension of its influence and the revival of the Pocket, has produced a very sprightly legal poem, in which the Ridicule endeavours to establish its claims to preference. We trust the Pocket will be enabled to make a rejoinder equally valid in the courts of wit and law.
The fourth Brother’s Tale is accompanied by a note from the third Brother Fitz Howard, stating that his History (about which he supposes our fair members to be marvellously interested) is included in that of St Alme of Windermere. We request our hearers to notice the signature, as the poem is unquestionably lakish, and we suspect this Hermit to be one of those who are wont, in the words of the fair Artemisia,
By Windermere’s romantic lake
Their morn and evening walks to take,
With Wordsworth and the rest!
He is probably one of the Pedlar’s acquaintance.
In the course of the readings the fifth Lecture on Comparative Physiology will be introduced; and they will be concluded by Miss Stormont’s Prize Essay.