Page images
[ocr errors]


came scarce once more, and I was held my peace, refraining from classical driven to my wit's end to devise how I quotation. should continue to live as I had done. Being as that's the case," said the I tried, among other plans, that of keep- old lady, “I'll just tell you my symping certain pills and other medicines,. toms. You said you give either kind which I sold to my patients; but on of medicine, did n't you ?" the whole I found it better to send all “Just so," I replied. my prescriptions to one druggist, who “Clams or oysters, whichever opens charged the patient ten or twenty per most lively, as my Joe says. Perhaps cent over the correct price, and handed you know Joe, - tends the oyster-stand this amount to me.

at stall No. 9." In some cases I am told the per- No, I did not know Joe; but what centage is supposed to be a donation were the symptoms ? on the part of the apothecary; but I They proved to be numerous, and rather fancy the patient pays for it in included a stunnin' in the head, and a the end. It is one of the absurd va- misery in the side, and a goin' on with garies of the profession to discounte- bokin' after victuals. nance the practice I have described, but I proceeded of course to apply a I wish, for my part, I had never done stethoscope over her ample bosom, anything worse more dangerous. though what I heard on this or similar Of course it inclines a doctor to change occasions I should find it rather diffihis medicines a good deal, and to order cult to state. I remember well my them in large quantities, which is occa- astonishment in one instance, where, sionally annoying to the poor ; yet, as I having unconsciously applied my inhave always observed, there is no pov- strument over a large chronometer in erty so painful as your own, so that in the watch-fob of a sea-captain, I cona case of doubt I prefer equally to cluded for a brief space that he was distribute pecuniary suffering among suffering from a rather remarkable dismany, rather than to concentrate it on placement of the heart. As to the old myself.

lady, whose name was Checkers, and About six months after the date of who kept an apple-stall near by, I told my rather annoying adventure, an inci- her that I was out of pills just then, but dent occurred which altered somewhat would have plenty next day. Accordand for a time improved, my profes- ingly I proceeded to invest a small sional position. During my morning

During my morning amount at a place called a Homeooffice-hour an old woman came in, and, pathic Pharmacy, which I remember putting down a large basket, wiped her amused me immensely. face with a yellow cotton handkerchief A stout little German, with great silfirst, and afterwards with the corner of ver spectacles, sat behind a counter her apron. Then she looked around containing numerous jars of white uneasily, got up, settled her basket on powders labelled concisely, Lach., Led., her arm with a jerk, which decided the Onis., Op., Puls., etc., while behind him future of an egg or two, and remarked were shelves filled with bottles of briskly, “Don't see no little bottles what looked like minute white shot. about ; got to the wrong stall I guess. “I want some homoeopathic mediYou ain't no homeopath doctor, are cine,” said I.

“Vat kindst ?” said my friend. “Vat With great presence of mind, I re- you vants to cure ?" plied, “Well, ma'am, that depends I explained at random that I wished upon what you want. Some of my to treat diseases in general. patients like one, and some like the “Vell, ve gifs you a case, mit a other.” I was about to add, “ You pooks”; - and thereupon produced a pays your money and you takes your large box containing bottles of small choice," but thought better of it, and pills and powders, labelled variously

you ?"

with the names of diseases, so that all ague, I usually found, too, that I could you required was to use the headache persuade him to let me try a good dose or colic bottle in order to meet the of quinine ; while, on the other hand, needs of those particular maladies. there was a distinct pecuniary advan

I was struck at first with the exqui- tage in those cases of the shakes which site simplicity of this arrangement; but could be made to believe that it was before purchasing, I happened luckily “best not to interfere with nature.” I to turn over the leaves of a book, in ought to add, that this kind of faith is two volumes, which lay on the counter, uncommon among folks who carry hods and was labelled, “Jahr — Manual.” or build walls. Opening at page 310, Vol. I., I lit upon For women who are hysterical, and Lachesis, which, on inquiry, proved to go heart and soul into the business of be snake-venom. This Mr. Jahr stated being sick, I have found the little pills to be indicated in upwards of a hun- a most charming resort, because you dred maladies. At once it occurred to cannot carry the refinement of sympme that Lach. was the medicine for my toms beyond what my friend Jahr has money, and that it was quite needless done in the way of fitting medicines to to waste cash on the box. I therefore them, so that, if I had been disposed bought a small jar of Lach, and a lot honestly to practise this droll style of of little pills, and started for home. therapeutics, it had, as I saw, certain

My old woman proved a fast friend; conveniences. and as she sent me numerous patients, Another year went by, and I was beI by and by altered my sign to “ Home- ginning to prosper in my new mode of opathic Physician and Surgeon," what- life. The medicines (being chiefly milkever that may mean, and was regarded sugar, with variations as to the labels) by my medical brethren as a lost sheep, cost next to nothing; and, as I charged and by the little-pill doctors as one who pretty well for both these and my advice, had seen the error of his ways.

I was now able to start a gig, and also · In point of fact, my new practice had to bring my sister, a very pretty girl of decided advantages. All the pills looked fourteen years old, to live with me in and tasted alike, and the same might a small house which I rented, a square be said of the powders, so that I was from my old office. never troubled by those absurd investi- This business of my sister's is one gations into the nature of the reme- of the things I like the least to look dies which some patients are prone to back upon. When she came to me make. Of course I desired to get busi- she was a pale-faced child, with large, ness, and it was therefore obviously mournful gray eyes, soft, yellow hair, unwise to give little pills of Lach. or and the promise of remarkable good Puls. or Sep., when a man distinctly looks. As to her attachment to me, it needed full doses of iron, or the like. was someting quite ridiculous. She I soon discovered, however, that it was followed me to the door when I went only necessary to describe cod - liver out, waited for me to come in, lay oil, for instance, as a diet, in order to awake until she heard my step at night, make use of it where required. When and, in a word, hung around my neck a man got impatient over an ancient like a kind of affectionate mill-stone.



AM indebted to you for a knowl- who, except for purposes of deprecatory

edge of life in the old cathedral contrast, would probably be ignored ; towns of England, -of the ecclesias- and, in our own times, the idea is rather tical side of society, so minute and identified with caricature than sympaauthentic that it is like a personal ex- thy, — we associate these insular travperience.” Thus I replied to Anthony ellers with exclusiveness and prejudice. Trollope's declaration that he lacked As a general rule, they know little and an essential quality of the novelist, – care less for the fellow-creatures among imagination. “Ah,” he replied, “when whom they sojourn, holding themselves you speak of careful observation and aloof, incapable of genial relations, and the honest and thorough report thereof, owning no guide to foreign knowledge I am conscious of fidelity to the facts but Murray and the Times. Farce of life and character ; but,” he added, and romance have long made capital with that bluff heartiness so character out of this obtuse and impervious naistic of the man, “my brother is more tionality; and it is the more refreshing, than an accurate observer : he is a because of the general rule, to note a scholar, a philosopher as well, with his- noble exception, - to see an Englishtorical tastes and cosmopolitan sympa- man, highly educated, studious, domesthies, - a patient student. You should tic, and patriotic, yet dwelling in Italy, read his books ";— and he snatched a' not to despise and ignore, but to interpencil, and wrote out the list for me.* pret and endear the country and people, Only two of Thomas Adolphus Trol- -- making his hospitable dwelling, with lope's volumes have been republished all its Italian trophies and traits, the in this country, - one a novel of Eng- favorite rendezvous for the best of his lish life, in tenor and traits very like countrymen and the native society, his brother's, the other a brief me- there discussing the principles and moir of a famous and fair Italian. † prospects of civic reform, doing honor This curious neglect on the part of to men of genius and aspiration, irreAmerican publishers induces us to spective of race, - blending in his salon briefly record this industrious and in- the scholarly talk of Landor with the teresting author's claims to grateful fervid pleas of “ Young Italy,” giving recognition, especially on the part of equal welcome to English radical, Piedthose who cherish fond recollections montese patriot, American humanitaof Italian travel, and enjoy the sympa- rian, and Tuscan dilettante,- and thus, thetic and intelligent illustration of Ital- as it were, recognizing the free and ian life and history.

faithful spirit of modern progress and In a literary point of view “An brotherhood amid the old armor, briEnglishman in Italy,” in the last cen- dal chests, parchment tomes, quaintly tury, would be suggestive of a classical carved chairs, and other mediæval relics tour like that of Addison and Eustace, of a Florentine palazzo. - a field of study and speculation quite But this cosmopolitan candor, so apart from the people of the country, rare as a social phenomenon among

the English in Italy, is no less char* A History of Florence, in four volumes ; Paul

acteristic of Adolphus Trollope as a the Pope and Paul the Friar; Filippo Strossi ; writer. As he entertained, in his The Girlhood of Catharine de' Medici; A Decade of Italian Women; Trescany in 1849; La Beata;

pleasant, antique reception - room or Marietta ; Giulio Malatesta ; Beppo the Con- garden-terrace, disciples of Cavour, of script. London : Chapman and Hall. 1856- Mazzini, and of Gioberti, with men and 1865. # Lindisfarn Chase. Harper and Brothers, 1863.

women of varied genius and opposite Life of Vittoria Colonna. Sheldon & Co., 1859.

convictions from England and the Unit



ed States, extending kindly tolerance research and patient narration, renor catholic sympathy to all, so he ders the author so well equipped and sought, in the history of the past and inspired for his task. He has brought the facts of the present in the land together the essential social and poof his love and adoption, evidences of litical facts of the past, and, associating her vital worth and auspicious destiny. them with local traits and transitions, Long residence abroad liberalized, and enabled us to realize the rise, prolong study enriched, a mind singularly gress, and alternations of the Italian just in its appreciation, and a heart nat- state, as it is next to impossible for urally kind and expansive. All his the Anglo-Saxon reader to do while friends recognize in Adolphus Trollope exploring the partial, prejudiced, and that rare union of rectitude and reflec- complicated annals of the native histion which constitutes the genuine phi- torians. This is a needful, a timely, losopher. Mrs. Browning aptly called and a gracious service, for which every him Aristides. Thus living in the at intelligent and sympathetic traveller mosphere of broad social instincts, and who has learned to love the Tuscan sharing the literary faculty and facility capital, and grown bewildered over the of his family, this Englishman in Italy complex story of her civil strifes, will set himself deliberately to study the feel grateful, while his obligations are country of his sojourn, in her records, renewed by the moderate but candid local memorials, and social life, and statement of those later movements, having so studied, to reproduce and il- which, culminating in a childlike trilustrate the knowledge thus gleaned, umph, were followed by a reaction with the fidelity of an annalist and the whose hopelessness was more appartact of a raconteur. It was a noble and ent than real, and has subsequently pleasant task, and has been nobly and proved an auspicious trial and trainpleasantly fulfilled. Let us note its ing for the discipline and privileges chief results, and honor the industry, of constitutional liberty. truth, and humane wisdom manifest The “History of Florence " is retherein.

markable for the skilful method whereThe range of Mr. Trollope's investi- by the author has arranged, in luminous gations may be appreciated by the fact sequence, a long and confused series that, while he is the author of " A His- of political events. He has confined tory of Florence from the Earliest In- his narrative to the essential points of dependence of the Commune to the an intricate subject, omitting what is of Fall of the Republic in 1531," he has mere casual or local interest, and aimalso given to the press the most clearing to elucidate the civic growth of the and reliable account of the revolution little city on the banks of the Arno. of our own day, under the title of It is an admirable illustration of the “Tuscany in 1849”; thus supplying conservative principles of free municithe two chronicles of the past and pal institutions in the Middle Ages, the present which together reveal the notwithstanding their limited sway and origin, development, and character of frequent perversion. There is no atthe state and its people. In the Pref- tempt at rhetorical display, but great ace to the former work he suggests this precision and authenticity of statement, vital connection between the ancient and a conscientious citation of authorirepublic and the modern city. “It con- ties; the style ‘often lapses into coltains," he observes, “such an exposi- loquial freedom, not inappropriate to tion of the old Guelph community as the familiar discussion of some of the sufficiently demonstrates the fitness of curious details involved in the theme; this culmination of the grand old city's and there are episodes of judicious and fortunes.” It is this liberal and com- philosophical comment, with apt hisprehensive tone, this “looking before torical parallels, not a few of which and after," which, united to careful come home to our recent national ex


perience. The author's previous stud- Republic of Venice, the ecclesiastical ies in Italian history, and intimate fa- and civic power, then opened the way miliarity with the scene of his chroni- to human freedom, and Sarpi is truly cle, give him a grasp and an insight exhibited as the pioneer reformer. His which render his treatment at once liberal studies, foreign friends, and inthorough, sensible, and facile. But it dependent and intrepid mind rendered is upon the more special subjects of him admirably fitted for the task he Italian history that Mr. Trollope has undertook, and the Papal government expended his time and talents to the only added infamy to despotism by the best advantage, — subjects chosen with baffled attempt to assassinate him. It singular judgment and imbued with is difficult to imagine a better introducfresh local and personal interest. tion to the subsequent history of free

The scope and method of these his- thought and spiritual emancipation, torical studies are such as at once to which culminated in the Reformation, embody and illustrate what is nor- than this biographical sketch, where a mally characteristic in time, place, and great historical development is made individual, while completeness of treat- clear and dramatic by the carefully told ment is secured, and a person and pe- story of the lives of the two chief acriod made suggestive of a comprehen- tors and agents therein. sive historical subject. Thus in “The There is a power in the state, unofGirlhood of Catharine de' Medici” ficial, but essential, and therefore more we have the key to her mature and intimately blended with its welfare and relentless bigotry, the logical origin identified with its fortunes than pope, of the massacre of St. Bartholomew, emperor, or prince, — and that is the while, at the same time, the discipline Banker. Even in modern times the of a convent and the intrigues of a life of such a financier as Lafitte is ruling family in the Middle Ages are part of the social and political history elaborately unfolded. Grouped around of France ; but in mediæval times, and associated with so remarkable an when “the sinews of war" and the historical woman, they have a definite wages of corruption so often turned significance to the modern reader, oth- the scale of ambition and success, erwise unattainable ; the Palazzo Medi- the rich bankers of the Italian cities ci, the Convents of St. Mark, Santa

were among the most efficient of their Lucia, and Murate, become scenes of social forces and fame. In writing the personal interest; the Cardinal Clem- memoirs of Filippo Strozzi, Mr. Trolent and Alessandro, in their relation to lope struck the key-note of local asthe young Catharine, grow more real sociations in the Tuscan capital. The in their subtlety, family ambitions, and least observant or retrospective stranunscrupulous tyranny; and the sur- ger is impressed with the sight of the roundings, superstition, fanaticism, and

massive walls and grated windows of domestic despotism which attended the the Strozzi Palace, and is attracted forlorn girl until she became the wife by such a monument of the past to of Henry of France, explain her sub- the story of its founder. A standard sequent career and execrated memory. drama and novel were long since Incidentally the life of mediæval Tus- made to illustrate those annals,* but cany is also revealed with authentic it was reserved for an Englishman in emphasis. In Paul the Pope and Italy to record, in a well - digested Paul the Friar,” all the singular cir- and authentic narrative, the career of cumstances whereby a priest of Rome Filippo, whose immense wealth, marbecame the instrument of striking the riage to a Medici, family ambition, first effectual blow at her absolute scholarship, political and social disspiritual dominion are narrated with tinction, enterprise, and luxury, and precision and tact. The prolonged

Filippo Stroszi, Tragedia par G. B. Niccolini. quarrel between the Vatican and the Luisa Strozzi, Romanzo par G. Rossini.


« PreviousContinue »