BETA

HORÆ SCANICÆ.

No II.

The Palace of the Lamp.

LETTER FROM OEHLENSCHLAEGER, THE DANE, TO ME————.

Translated from the Danish.

My dear friend,
—I thank you for your attention in sending me the * pub-
lication emanating from the purlieus of Bond-street ; but you certainly must
have been a perfunctory reader of my dramatic compositions, and not heartily
impressed with the great leading feature of my style of writing, did you be-
lieve, that the translation it contains of the scene of my Aladdin into gigantic,
and (to my foreign ears at least) unreadable verse, was a fair copy of my language.
In order to shew you how unfortunate a version it is, I send you the drama, by our
mutual friend, Mr A. A. Feldborg, Professor of Languages, who will pass through
Edinburgh in a few days. I look to you, my dear friend, to do me justice.
You are not an unpractised wooer of the Heliconian deities. In your soul there
is an abiding place for poesy—a deep, an inexhaustible well of those holy and
reverential ideas which the mere men of surface, the wits, the review-critics
cannot ever conceive. Rise up, then, from your too long continued slumber,
and if your diffidence still continue to prevent you from taking that place
among the great poets of your own father-land, which you could instantly
claim, yet for a friend exert yourself, that his place may not be set too low.
Rise up, I say, and put an end to the paltry tribe of parodists and mistransla-
tors, a crew, of whom I recollect yoou expressing your just disdain, in one of
those soul-stirring conversations which I enjoyed with you at your lodgings in
Altona, in company with the loved, the lost Novalis. You remember those
days :  So do I. They are treasured up in my memory as the most golden

* Ollier’s Literary Miscellany, No I.
period of my existence. His musical countenance, beaming with enthusiasm,
still sparkles before me. Evem the inanimate objects, trite and trivial as they
were, that filled the little blue parlour in which we sat, are still seen by me
as though in visioon beatific. Blessed, though mournful, is this elementary
feeling, this simple impression on my imaginative faculty, this mental spec-
trum, which brings before my inward optics the forms of other days, brighten-
ed by the hues thrown over them by memory. To speak in the harmonious
words of a great Scald of your own country,—
Oft, when on my couch I lie,1
In vacant, oor in pensive mood,2
They flash upon that inward eye,3
Which is the bliss of soolitude.4
But, to return to my Aladdin : —translate, in a manner creditable to me,
the scene which the London men have mistranslated, and having done so,
publish it in some respectable work. If you be acquainted with the editor of
Blackwood’s Magazine, I wish yoou to transmit it to him, and at the same time
return him my most sincere thanks for his splendid article on my Hakon Jarl.
My opinion of the state of parties in England entirely coincides with yours.
As for the Whigs, they are impelled in their insane course by destiny. The
grim, awful, and inflexible goddess, urges them forward, the blind instruments
of her decrees, to their destruction. An ancient curse hangs over them, the
consequences of which they cannoot avoid.  “ The Fall of the Whigs” would
be a fine philosophical subject for a deep tragedy, exemplifying the dark my-
time to amplify sufficiently on this subject at present, and turn with pleasure
to domestic inquiries. [The rest of the letter is of a private nature.]
With sentiments of of love and esteem, I am your devoted friend,
Oehlenschlaeger.
P. S.—Send me the Magazine, whatever it be, (Blackwood’s, I hope), in
which your translation appears. Best compliments to the intellectual compa-
nion of yoour Scandinavian journeyings.

THE BUILDING OF THE PALACE OF THE LAMP *.

Speakers, 1st Genius—Attendant Genii.
1st Genius.
Deep in the earth the foundation is planted,5
Gaily I work, but more blocks here are wanted.6
Two others.
Here they are, master, here they are plenty,7
We can supply them twenty on twenty ;8
Hither we waft, on our high-soaring pinion,9
The very best blocks of the Cockney dominion.10
Here’s Hunt, with a crown of a scattery irradiance,11
Which holds all the bards of Bow-bell in allegiance.12
This, studded with pimples, is Lecturer Hazlitt,13
Stinking and sparkling, as if ’ twere with gas lit.14
Here’s Corny Webb, and this other, an please ye,15
Is Johnny Keats ; —how it smells of magnesia.16
Here is a block, and few blocks can be greater,17
Mr Leslie, the glorious refrigerator.18
Here is another, in shape of a bullock,19
By his dim dirty eye you may know ’ tis M‘Culloch.20
Here’s Parr (alias Pore) a block of much merit ;21
This low-looking lump is poor common-place Terrot ;22
This little bunch, by its weight, seems a bailie ;23
And here is a hamper that never will fail ye,24
The hardest, the heaviest blocks ever seen, sir,25
For I’ve brought all the beasts of John Scot’s Magazine, sir ;26

* Or, as it might be rendered, of the Illuminati.
But we are losing our time in describing,27
Here at a slap we throw the whole tribe in ;28
We tried their value while hitherward flitting,29
For in London, by luck, were the Aldermen sitting.30
There, with our lumber, a short time we stood, sir,31
To weigh it ’ gainst Aldermen Waithman and Wood, sir ;32
But the blocks of the Row, to all others superior,33
To the weights of Guildhall I own are inferior ;34
And a by-standing Irishman, one Patrick Deasy,35
When he saw us comparing them, cried out, Be easy,36
Your blockheads are very good blockheads, but faith man,37
They will ne’er be such blockheads as Wood or as Waithman.38
1st Gen.
Ho ! bring me mortar, my building to fasten.39
Two others.
Here, with a compost, we merrily hasten ;40
’Tis a mash of the gin-bibbing clubs’ resolutions, 41
Which in alehouses meet, to concoct revolutions.42
Here are the oracles too of the sots, man,43
Statesman, Examiner, Black Dwarf, and Scotsman,44
Republican, Register—all of the rabble45
Who in country or town spit their venomous gabble.46
Hunt threw in, to season this worshipful mash, a47
Hamper of coculus, gentian, and quassia ; *48
† Sir Dick gave the dung that he ventures to mute on49
The glories of Europe, our Wellesley and Newton ;50
Wax was added by Preston, that patriot of leather,51
And pestleman Watson then brayed all together.52
1st Gen.
Ho ! a stone from the north ! a strong stone for the corner !53
Two others.
Here is a stone which, when wrought by a Horner, 54
Sparkled in colours of yellow and azure,55
As the best bit of glass you e’er bought from a glazier :56
But now ’ tis grown cloudy ; I much am afraid, it57
Mourns its brilliancy gone, and its fine colours faded,58
And the lip of contempt has been showering its spittle59
Upon it of late, which has wet it a little.60
1st Gen.
Ho ! for the cornice bring ornaments suiting !61
Two others.
We, in the shape of reviewers went rooting,62
And here have brought up, from the modern Parnassus,63
The principal flowers of its principal asses ;64
False figures, false tropes, false language, false reason,65
True venom, true blasphemy, very true treason,66
Mixed with true affectation, true mimini pimini, 67
In fact, what you find in Endymion and Rimini.68
Here’s Apoller, and Windar, and Hannar, and Laurar,69
And phrases which strike all the muses with horror.70
Here’s a gay whistling brine, and ships swirling upon it ; ‡71
And here’s a jerked feather that swales’in a bonnet,72
Come, stick them up, you will find them as fine a’,73
As gingerbread-gold, copper-lace, of cracked china.74
1st Gen.
Who brings me diamonds, or emeralds, or rubies ?75
Two others.
Here’s what’s as good for bedazzling the boobies ;76
We bring a thousand impressions so proper77
Of his Majesty’s visage in good-looking copper ;78
We were attending a radical meeting,79
Where nine-tenths were gulls, whom the one-tenth was cheating ;80

* These were Hunt’s great expedients for reforming beer when he was a brewer. Mr
Accum, alias Mr Death-in-the-pot, acknowledges, with due gratitude, his obligations to
this great man in giving him hints for his magnum opus.
† Sir Richard Phillips, Knt. who has utterly overthrown Sir Isaac Newton, and tramp-
led on the Duke of Wellington.
‡ Vide Leigh Hunt’s Rimini for these precious verses.
At the end, says the chief, in dispersing the poison,81
Come, come, subscribe, ’ tis to carry the cause on,82
Down with your cash, all I ask is a penny ; ” 83
And the pence were put down by the chucklepate many.84
We genii, you know, in a moment detected85
The laugh-in-the-sleeve of the rogues who collected,86
And followed unseen, ’ till we saw them all seated,87
Full of hopes of the spoil, but these hopes were soon cheated,88
For among them we swooped, and away in a minute89
We whipt with their box, and the coppers all in it,90
And left them all dumb, both with grief and amazement,91
Looking, some up the chimney, some out of the casement ;92
At last, off they sneaked, puzzled, thirsty, and hungry,93
And swore this was worse even than base boroughmongry.94
1st Gen.
Who brings me pictures of dainty devising ?95
2d Gen.
Here they are friend, far superior to pricing.96
This sketch of a woe-begone gang of banditti,97
Whose looks more you fear ; yet incline you to pity,98
Is the famed all the talents, the great opposition,99
The Tory’s contempt, the Reformer’s derision ;100
How well done is each face! Indeed ’ tis well known, Sir,101
* That Methuen and Freemantle painted. their own, Sir,102
Look, there’s Peter Moore ! He is wisely pourtrayed in :103
The part of great Bottom by greasy-pate Haydon ;104
The ass-head is so like in expression and feature,105
You must see it was Peter who sat for the creature.106
Here’s—but in describing my talent is scanty,107
Go send to Auld Reekie to fetch Dilletanti.108
1st Gen.
Who brings me gold for the purpose of framing ?109
Two others.
Patience ! Here’s gold ! Yellow gold ! see ’ tis flaming,110
With a bright shining lustre. ’ Tis I who was lucky111
In following Birkbeck beyond far Kentucky ;112
The wealth of old Crœsus, the wealth of the fairies113
Is nothing compared with the wealth of the prairies.114
Though the climate is sickly, the land foul and swampy,115
The day-hole you live in, cold, dirty, and dampy,116
The society vile, the mere scum of creation,117
A fraudulent runaway base population,118
’Tis the country of gold—gold grows on its mountains,119
Gold paves all its streets†—and it springs from its fountains ;120
You must own it is true, for friend Birkbeck declares it,121
Flower vouches the fact, Mr Madison swears it,122
Then believe it, my lads, or confess you are asses,123
When you see in our hands such huge native gold masses.124
1st Gen.
Silk ! bring me silk to bedeck the interior !125
Two others.
Here’s paper, an ornament vastly superior,126
Here’s a ton of petitions, and, what can be sager,127
Drivelled forth by the dam ‘ of reform, the old Major ;128
Here’s a speech full of ignorance, nonsense, and blunders,129
By that great rhetorician‡ feu Lord Maire de Londres ;130
Here’s another by Becher,§ which snapt in the middle131
Like Hudibras’ tale of the bear and the fiddle ;132
Here’s a bundle of sheets (from a snuff-man. we got ’ em)133
Filled with only four words from the top to the bottom,134

* See New Whig Guide.
† Query—Are there any in friend Birkbeck’s Arcadia ? Note by the Translator.
‡‡ So Alderman Wood designated himself on his cards in Paris. Londres is to be pro-
nounced as the worthy Alderman pronounces it, that is, as rhyme to blunders ; such
being the etiquette of Cockney French.
§ M. P. for Mellow, who carries his speeches in his hat, and occasionally breaks
down.
You scarcely need ask who had wind to invent ’ em,135
For ’ tis plain at a glance it was Jeremy Bentham :136
And here are some thousand unsaleable numbers,137
Whose weight Mr Constable’s warehouses cumbers.138
1st Gen.
Who for the palace-gate brings me fit pillars ?139
Two others.
Astride of *M‘Culloch we pranced from Bob Miller’s,140
And galloped in paces most lubberly antic141
To our beast’s favourite pasture across the Atlantic,142
O’er the grave of Tom Paine, we saw going to rob it,143
The Atlas of England, P. Porcupine Cobbett ;144
He broke it all up in as sad a condition145
As he broke in his grammar the head of old Priscian,146
And he trotted away with the bones and the coffin147
† Of him against whom he so long had been scoffing ;148
‡ But we tore them away from the back of the schemer,149
And have brought you the bones of the brandy blasphemer ;150
So stick up for your pillars each mouldering dry bone,151
Backbone, and breastbone, shankbone, and thighbone.152
And here are some grinders, a fit decoration,153
Which we tore from the jaws of the Whig population ;154
The party is now just as mumping and toothless155
As it always was heartless and faithless and truthless ;156
We called to untooth them your friend the gay dentist,157
Dr Scott, the best poet that ever was prenticed.158
1st Gen.
I must beat the curst grinders as strait as an arrow.159
Ho ! of brass for the roof bring me quick a whole barrow.160
Two others.
Here’s a cartload of brass of the very best colour,161
Which we gleaned from the faces of Hunt, Hone, and Wooler ;162
Here’s another, which we with much science have taken163
From the front of a certain chirurgical deacon ; ǁ164
From their patrons in parliament, too, we have some, Sir,165
Got from Lambton and Tierney, small Newport, and Brougham, Sir.166
Poor devils ! since now all their brass is abstracted,167
How shabbily each of their parts will be acted !168
But on crossing the channel, if great Dan O’Connell,169
¶ Or Oriflam Dromgool, or ** ’ Neas M‘Donnell,170
Will indulge them by rubbing their foreheads to theirs, Sir,171
They soon will resume their superb brazen glare, Sir,172
For so touched every face will shine forth, aye will it,173
As bright as the base of a new copper skillet.174
1st Gen.
Who a fit spire for the turret has got to carry ?175
Two others.
We, from the hands of a cockney apothecary, ††176
Brought off this pestle, with which he was capering,177
Swearing and swaggering, rhyming and vapouring ;178

* In the original, Astride of Taurus. I have taken the liberty of substituting M‘Cul-
loch. The reader will, I am sure, pardon the introduction of a word almost sy-
nonimous,
† See Peter Porcupine of old times, and Cobbett’s life of T. Paine.
‡ Ever since poor Cobbett has been showing the bones of a baboon as those of Paine,
but ’ tis all one, only the unfortunate monkey is sadly libelled thereby.
§ How refreshing is Lord John Russel’s confession in his semitical letter to Mr Wil-
berforce, that the Whigs are now entirely powerless—weak in parliament, contemptible
out of it. So be it.
ǁ An unfortunate man who in Edinburgh is looking for the fame of Alderman Waith-
man in London—a noble ambition. It is hard to decide which is the greater ass, but
the linen-draper is certainly the most famous.
¶ A great Roman Catholic speaker in Ireland, who made a fine speech formerly about
bringing the inflame of Catholicity into the scattered ranks of heresy.
** An Irish orator, Aeneas quasi Aeneus (i. e. brazen-faced) M‘Donnell.
†† I would not insult my readers by insinuating, that this means Johnny Keats, who,
like Apollo, practises poetry and pharmacy. The blasphemous language of the Cockney
School is, with reluctance, imitated here.
Seized with a fit of poetical fury,179
(I thought he was drunk, my good sir, I assure ye)180
With this he was scattering, all through the whole house,181
Gallipot, glisterbag, cataplasm, bolus ;182
While the poor ’ prentices at him were staring,183
Or perhaps in their minds a strait waistcoat preparing,184
Loud he exclaimed, “ Behold here’s my truncheon ; 185
* I’m the Marshal of poets—I’ll flatten your nuncheon.186
Pitch physic to hell, you rascals, for damn ye, a187
I’ll physic you all with a clyster of Lamia.”188
Scared at the name, in a moment we darted,189
Whipt the pestle away, and from cockney-land parted.190
1st Gen.
Here on the top of the palace I place it,191
Such a building requires such a finish to grace it.192
The rest of this scene is only an advice to have this building puffed in the
Times by old Walter himself, and to make him † swear to the execution of it
in person.—Translator.

* Only Marshal. Hunt being king.
† “ I’ll swear it like old Walter of the Times.”—Whistlecraft.