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out of fashion--among young men, at least, for I can still say in the words of Ovid
“ Pulvere canitiem genitor
Fædat.” But there is one Mr. Prince, who has very impiously discovered means to turn the hair not only black, but any colour into which a sun-beam can be dissected, combined, or recombined. The misfortune is, that it is uncertain what hue it will take until the experiment has been tried ; but they who " set their crown upon a cast,” must “ stand the hazard of the die.” What an awful suspense while the metamorphosis is going on! But how much more awful must have been the discovery I hear a lady made the other day, who, after the application of this specific, found her locks converted to a bright lilac— A bright lilac!' exclaims my
fair reader, why that is ten times worse than bright red: much worse, I grant; and for my part, I cannot account for the universal antipathy that has been shewn towards red hair in every age of the world. Herodotus tells us, that the Africans put to death all red-haired people. Terence reckons it, together with cat's eyes and a parrotty nose, as an insurmountable objection to a proposed bride ; and a friend of mine declares, that he was flogged at Rugby for no other crime than having red hair.
But to return to my subject : it is no small gratification to see the judicial wig still legitimately upheld in its “pride of place." How, indeed, could a judge summon gravity sufficient to check the insolence of a hardened culprit, or overcome the taciturnity of a contumacious witness, without those awful badges of authority-those hirsute cataracts “ whose headlong streams hang list’ning in their fall," and in whose curling waves lurk preambles, precedents, and perorations; cases, commentaries, and convictions; and all the animalculæ distinctions and divisions that only a lawyer's microscopic eye can discover? The argumentative, or pleader's wig, with its dangling curls, like so many codicils to a will, is seldom made as persuasive as it might be, from the carelessness of the wearer, who often shews a fringe of his own hair beneath-a neglect altogether unpardonable, when we consider that the wig on a lawyer's head is the refracting medium, in passing and repassing through which it was intended that all the sinuosities of the law should be made straight; and if it be put carelessly on, the natural and too frequent consequence is, that they come out ten times more twisted than before. For my part, whenever I am led into the neighbourhood of Lincoln's Inn, I always avoid jogging the arm of the servant whom I chance to meet carrying a square deal box by a brass handle, well knowing how much depends on the article it contains; and I can easily imagine the consternation of a late noble chief justice, who, on one of his circuits, when he arrived at the first place where his wig was in requisition, discovered that he had thrown it out of the carriage window on the road in a bandbox, mistaking it for a parcel of feminine paraphernalia.
In the library of St. John's college, Oxford, there is a picture of King Charles, the wig of which is formed entirely from the Psalms, written in a legible hand, which I suppose some loyal subject transcribed in his zeal for his master as Defender of the faith. I mention this for the sake of the hint that may be taken from it to promote the study of the law; and I would recommend that the picture of some renowned judge, with the Statutes at large written in his wig, should be hung up
in Westminster Hall for the benefit of those briefless Peripatetics, whose forensic talents are still wrapped up in a napkin. Leaving these sanctuaries of the law, what a variety presents itself to the eye of the philoplocamist!-- First, the hypocritical, or imitative periwig, that "redolent of joy and youth," supplies the place of Nature's pepper-andsalt locks on the head of the quinquagenarian bachelor, who still delights “ to court the fair and glitter with the gay,” among whom it
while as freehold property, till the unbroken repose of every curl, like the steady colour on a beauty's cheek, betrays at last that it is merely copyhold.—Then comes the “ vix ea nostra voco," or whity-brown flaxen wig, that does not aspire to rivalry with Nature, nor yet altogether scorn the neatness of art, but hovering doubtfully between the two, presents much the same likeness to a head of hair, that the block on which it was made does to the head it was made for. Neatest of all is the philharmonic, or musician's jasy, that rises a scratch natural from the forehead, and terminates behind in a chorus of curls set in octaves, on and off of which the hat is most carefully moved for fear of creating discord, while a dislocated curl or a rebellious hair is adjusted with as much care as I suppose Cæsar displayed in the adjustment of his own locks in the Senate-House, which freed Cicero from half his fears for the ambitious spirit of the man, though to me it would have been a proof that some affair of importance was revolving in his head. Last, but not least, is the theological wig, whose unctuous conglomeration of hair, powder, and pomatum, round the occiput of the reverend wearer, seems calculated by the force of gravity to turn his views towards heaven, while of a summer's day the superfluity of fat, like the oil of Aaron's beard, runs down even unto the skirts of his clothing."
As a man is always delighted when he meets with any thing that tends to support an hypothesis of his own, I was somewhat pleased with what occurred to me a short time back. Having stept into the shop of "
an operator in the shaving line,” after he had described the state of the weather for the last week, and settled that of the week to come; decided the war between the Turks and Greeks; stepped across the Hellespont and given Asia Minor to the Persians; walked with the Emperor Alexander to the East Indies ; touched at Buenos Ayres on his return, and made a few changes in the Administration at home-when, I say, he had thus travelled round the world, while his razor was travelling over one half of my chin, during the time that he was engaged about the other half he entertained me with a dissertation on the criminal code ; and upon closer inspection I found that he had covered a natural baldness with a counsel's old wig, from which, to make it more becoming, he had cut away the pendent curls with which they are usually decorated ; and this was, no doubt, the cause of the disapprobation he expressed at so much hanging. At another time, when he had exchanged his legal for a clerical wig, he told me he was sorry to hear that by a late act a bishop could send a curate packing without warning or wages. I tried to convince him that curates had been gainers by that act; but to no purpose—he had a curate's wig and not a rector's.
In the course of these observations I have said nothing concerning the wigs of ladies, because as their only object can be the imitation of Nature, it would be a capital offence against the laws of politeness to hint that their hair owes any thing to art, except the style of wearing it, which I certainly consider very tasty at present, and have often been caught by the two little curls that come twisting out from under the back of the bonnet, to hook the attention of gazers like myself, and give Parthian wounds as they fly. For my part, I am very well content to follow two curls and a pretty shape without splashing into the mud, perhaps, to be disappointed in the face, as I used to do when there were no curls behind : and now, a lady who does not choose to countenance an admirer, by dextrous movements may give him the slip, with the character of a “dem fin girl," only from the prepossessing effects of these two curls. There is, however, a kind of semiwig, commonly called a front, which is in great vogue under a bonnet or cap :to any of my sex who may be smitten with a head of hair under such mysterious circumstances, I can only recommend the old adage--" Fronti nulla fides."
M. R. Y.
LOVE AND FOLLY.
But tagg’d with rhyme, and here I feel great pleasure
Love who had often thought it pretty sport
Besides a thousand other hateful things,
Love laugh'd at all he saw; Folly look'd grave,
A palace is a dungeon I am told,
“ I'm off!” But Folly seized him by the head,
Darkling he blunder'd, sad and sore distress'd,
Over some cash accounts, or, worse than all,
Till, wearied out, he sat him down and sigh'd
Heart-sick he pined and dwindled to a shade ;
A vile impostor upon cominon sense,
Poor Love was very ill, and his physicians,
So Love revived, and now on vengeance bent,
“ Revenge !” he cried, revenge me upon Folly!
To live on earth,-but, when she saw her blunder,
Her fears, as usual, vanish'd presently;
Then, looking round her with a saucy face,
“I grant,” said she, “the boy is to be pitied, Yet as he should be blind I ought to be acquitted.
“ Think what a blessing it will be to man,
How many a squinting nymph and loutish swain
Again, I'd have you know that Jove and all
grievous penalty shalt thou abide;
Fearless throughout the world, thus we decide, Love shall for evermore have Folly for his guide.” S. Y.
BELSHAZZAR.* We cannot think it a good augury that we are so soon again called upon to notice a new volume, from the pen of the Oxford professor of poetry. Unluckily for both Mr. Milman and his readers, his works are not of such a kind that they may be allowed to gall each other's kibe with impunity, as those of the northern novelist do ; and it is to be feared this frequent recurrence of them may tend to persuade us that, if they cannot be read without pleasure, there is a vague sense of duty performed mixed up with that pleasure, which, in cases of this kind, however it may add to its value in our sober judgment, does not increase its poignancy. The truth is, when we have finished the perusal of one of Mr. Milman's long dramatic poems, and assured ourselves that it is a good and meritorious work, we lay it down with the full conviction that its author is a person of cultivated talents and an elegant taste, and confidently hope that we shall, at some future period, be called upon to listen to him again. But when, contrary to the tacit bargain we have unconsciously made with ourselves, we find that “future in the instant,” the case seems altered ; and, after diligently perusing the new work, as in duty bound, we are inclined to look a little more closely into the nature of the pleasure we have derived from it, and to inquire whether it has not been chiefly made up of that kind of satisfaction which usually attends the consciousness of having well and duly performed an appointed task. Speaking thus much in the name of the public, and without pushing this inquiry farther at present, we may state, in illustration of our own feelings in regard to this and the previous works of Mr. Milman, that it was with a disposition to make this inquiry we took up the volume before us, and that this disposition was not changed on laying it down.
In fact, neither the subjects, the matter, nor the style of Mr. Milman's late works render it prudent in him to force them too frequently on public attention. However valuable may be the class to which his poems belong, the individuals of that class, in order to be tolerated, must be more than tolerable; and to be admired they must be admirable indeed : and even in the latter case, their rarity must form a part of their value, if they would hope to retain the estimation they merit. The feelings and imaginations of all classes of readers, learned or unlearned, gentle or simple, young or old, have necessarily formed for themselves such a chain of associations connected with Scripture stories, characters, and events, that to disturb those associations at all is dangerous, and to do so too frequently and pertinaciously is almost certainly fatal to the pretensions of those who venture it.
That it may be judged how far these remarks are applicable to the work before us, we will state generally that it is as inferior to the preceding one from the same pen (The Martyr of Antioch), as that was to The Fall of Jerusalem, and that its comparative and relative defects are of exactly the same kind as belong to those works. It has their cold pomp and overstrained dignity of style, and their loose and unmusical versification, added to a meagerness of interest and incident, and a feebleness in the delineation of character, which they did not altogether
Belshazzar : a Dramatic Poem. By the Rev. H. H. Milman, Professor of Poetry in the University of Oxford.
VOL. Y. NO. XIX.