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beauty. This wail she carried on as long as we remained ; suspecting host, whom he stabbed to the heart with the spear and her voice coming on the ear between the thunder-peals, already named, then scalped him, and, springing from the hut, had an effect singularly wild and unearthly; it would be was out of the village, and deep in a neighbouring waterfruitless to attempt a description of it. The reader, if he know course, by the time that his enemies' dogs were upon him ; what an Irishwoman's song of sorrow is, must imagine the effect again, by many a night march and day of hunger and sufferit would have at such a moment among those lightning-shat- ing, he arrived in his village, his conscience set at rest by the tered ruins, and chanted by such a living vocal monument of act at which we shudder. human woe and desolation.
Mr Catlin, who knew this chief intimately, relates many We subsequently learned on inquiry that this poor crea- stories of his bravery and general elevation of character, but ture's history was a sad one; she was slightly crazed, in con- we have room for the tale of his death only. In the year 1837, sequence of the death of her only son, who had been drowned ; Mr Catlin had left the friendly Mandans some three years, and her mania lay in a persuasion, which nothing could remove, when the small-pox was carried among them by the traders; that he was not lost, but would yet return to her to bless her, the whole family of the Four Bears perished by this disease and close her long-weeping eyes in peace.
wife, child, not one was left him; he stood alone in his deso. lation, and gathering the corpses together, he covered all with
skins, after the manner of his people; the songs for the dead THE RED MEN OF AMERICA.
then performed, he seated himself by the mound he had raised, which he addressed from time to time in the most touching
terms of endearment, as each individual composing the mournWe could relate many instances of the gratitude with which ful group rose to his memory. This continued through nine Indians repay a kindness, and of their firmness in friendship, days and nights, during all which he took neither food nor but our limits restrain us. We must besides admit, that they sleep, and on the tenth he was himself a corpse. are equally resentful of injury as mindful of favours, and The native American is deeply imbued with religious feelpersecute an enemy with as much constancy as they cherish ing; no Indian who maintains a fair character in his tribe is a friend. Mr Catlin bas preserved the portrait of a Man- without some place of retirement for worship and meditation ; dan chief, named Mah-to-tôh-pa, or the Four Bears, whose a lonely tree, à nook in the bank of a stream, the hollow of a life affords many singular illustrations of the above truths. rock, are frequently selected for this purpose; nor is the We have room for one only. His brother had been sur- habit confined to such tribes as have no fixed religious cereprised while asleep by a Riccaree, who left the spear with monies; it was practised by the Mandans and others, many of which he had murdered the sleeping man in the wound, whom possessed oratories such as we have just described, in and boasted of what he had done. The Four Bears took pos- addition to their “medicine" or “mystery lodges," which may session of the spear, preserved it carefully, with the blood of be called their public temples. The Osages, Kansas, and his brother encrusted on its point, and swore to cover that other tribes west of the Mississippi, never fail to implore the stain with the heart's blood of the Riccaree. Many moons blessing of the Great Spirit on breaking up their encampelapsed, many snows even went by, and the Four Bears had ments, and they return thanks devoutly for the food they have not yet found the much desired opportunity of revenge. At found, and the preservation they have experienced, on arriving length the culpability of his enforced delay became too heavy at the end of their journey. Thanks and praises are also puba reproach, and he resolved on seeking the Riccaree in his licly offered at every new moon, at the commencement of the distant home, to do which he had to steal his way through his buffalo hunts in spring, and at the ingathering of the corn ; at enemy's country for hundreds of miles; a task, the difficulty of which latter period a feast is held, called the corn feast: over which can be appreciated only by those who know the watch this, among some tribes, the oldest woman presides. The fulness of Indian habits, and the vigilance of those whom he Minatarrees boil a large kettle full of the new corn in presence had to circumvent. But " when Greek meets Greek,” we of all the people, four medicine men, painted with white clay, all know what “ comes;" in this case, however, “diamond- dancing round the kettle until its contents are well boiled; cut-diamond” were perhaps the more appropriate metaphor : these are next burnt to ashes as an offering to the Great Spirit; let our readers settle that point. The Four Bears accom- the fire is then extinguished; new fire is immediately created plished his task ; he had traversed many a weary plain, by rubbing two sticks together; with this they cook the corn had threaded many a tangled forest, swam many a river ; for their own feast, and the remainder of the day is spent in but at length he stood, famished and outworn, before the festivity, village of his enemy. This was surrounded by a stockade, Dances are also performed to the Great Spirit on various but he overcame that with little difficulty. It was night, occasions, as among the Ojibbeways on the first fall of snow; but the dwelling of the offender was known to him, and en- this is danced in snow-shoes. All believe in a future state of tering it, he sat down before the fire, over which hung a existence-in the reward of the good by an eternal residence pot containing food, which the provident squaw had set to in pleasant and plentifully supplied hunting grounds beyond simmer through the night. The family were in their beds, the great waters--and in the punishment of the wicked by which consist of skins stretched on low frames, and ranged | transformation into some loathsome beast, reptile, or insect, around the walls of the hut. The Riccaree, the object of the and by banishment to barren, parched, and desolate regions, Mandan's visit, was also on his couch, with his arms close the abodes of bad spirits, for a period proportionate to the enbeside him, as is the custom. But he was not asleep; tho ormity of their guilt. Prayers are also offered to the evil spirit flame as it rose fitfully was reflected from his glittering eyes, in deprecation of his enmity, but on none of these ceremonies is which rested, but with no particular interest, on his visitor. attendance compelled; that Indian is, however, less respected, The latter, conscious that his then exhausted strength was who is known constantly to absent himself from all. not equal to the duty he came to perform, sat collected within The “ medicine man" of the Indians is at once prophet, himself for a certain time ; he then took part of the food that priest, and physician ; he has sometimes great influence. The filled the pot, and ate in such measure as he thought advi- ceremony by which this dignity is attained among the Sioux, sable. This done, he lighted his pipe, and sat to smoke it. is one involving no little suffering. The candidate for this The squaw meanwhile had asked her husband what man it honour has innumerable splints of wood driven through the was who was reposing at their hearth. “He is a hungry man, most sensitive parts of his flesh, and being suspended by some for thou seest he is eating ; what matter for the rest ? was her of these to a pole, with his medicine bag in his hand, he is exhusband's reply, and the uninvited guest concluded his meal pected to keep his eyes steadily fixed on the sun from its rising without interruption. Was the Mandan shaken by what we to its setting, when he is taken down, and entitled to be called feel to be the most touching appeal of this deep confidence a medicine or mystery man for the remainder of his life; but to his better sympathies ? He scarcely felt that it was one. he has to make ceaseless efforts for the support of his characAmong Indians, hospitality is neither offered nor accepted ter, since the failure of either his cures or his prophecies renas a matter of favour, but of right, and of course ; nor ders him liable to universal contempt. would he have replied to such an appeal could he have felt Almost every family has its medicine or mystery bag, which it. He believed himself to be in the performance of a most consists of a beaver or otter skin curiously ornamented; this solemn duty, and would have scorned all vacillation as weak contains the medicinal stores and smaller consecrated articles ness. Nor shall we be just ourselves if we lose sight of this of the family ; it is considered a great disgrace to sell or otherin our abhorrence of his deed.
wise part with an article once consecrated, and the medicine The pipe of the Mandan exhausted, he adjusted his raiment bag is always held sacred and in violate to every hand but that for departure ; he rose, collected his force, sprang on his un- of its owner. When a warrior of the Sac and Fox tribe falls
in battle, his widow suspends his mystery bag on the pole be- deer, into impassable ravines or to the brink of precipices, fore his tent, and sits herself within the lodge; the warriors, when they slaughter as many as they may need ; but none were returned from the battle, and adorned with the scalps they ever destroyed wantonly before the introduction of whisky ; have taken from the enemy, then assemble before the lodge; whereas at this time whole herds are killed merely for their they dance to the medicine bag of their lost brother, and skins, the flesh being left to decay on the prairies, and this, throw presents to his widow, of such articles as they think by depopulating the hunting-grounds, induces famine, and is may best console her for her loss.
another cause of Indian suffering and final extinction. The Indian dwelling is much varied in its form and manner Buffaloes are often destroyed by the panther ; solitary indiamong the various tribes; the Pawnees, for example, live in viduals sometimes fall a prey to a pack of wolves ; others lodges thatched with prairie grass, and which are not unlike perish in the burning prairies, that awfully peculiar feature of immense bee-hives.
the American solitudes ; a few are drowned every season in The Sioux, the Camanchees, the Crows, and others inhabit attempting to cross the ice of rivers not firmly frozen ; but ing a vast tract on the upper waters of the Mississippi and the principal element of their destruction is in the rapacity of Missouri rivers, and extending to the base of the Rocky the trader ; and it has been calculated that the activity of Mountains, have moveable tents formed of buffalo skins richly this last-named agent will ensure the extermination of this ornamented, according to Indian notions of ornament, and most valuable creature within a very short period of time. fastened to poles sometimes twenty-five feet high ; some of The education of the Indian child is an object of the most these tents will shelter eighty persons, and require from profound interest, not only to his own family but to the whole thirty to thirty-five buffalo skins to cover them.
tribe. He is taught to love his country and tribe, to contemn The Riccarees, Mandans, &c. are, or were, lodged in vil- falsehood, to reverence age, to be modest and silent ; he is lages fortified by strong stockades eighteen feet high; their strictly enjoined to reward a kindness, but also to avenge an huts are formed of poles covered closely and smoothly with injury ; to aid and guard a friend, but also to injure, by every earth, and this in process of time becomes so compact and means in his power, and relentlessly to persecute, an enemy; hard, that men, women, and children, recline and play on their to abhor theft, unless it be practised on the property of an tops.
enemy, when it is called highly meritorious. The sports of It has been sometimes asserted that the Indian people have youth are watched attentively by their elders, and all evi. a common language, but this is not the case ; scarcely any two dences of cowardice, meanness, &c., are followed by the needful of their nations between whom no intercourse exists, possess discipline. The Indian usually retains his mother's name until a language understood by both, but this inconvenience is ob- he has entitled himself, by some remarkable act of prowess, viated by a “language of signs,” so effective and eloquent endurance, &c., to choose one for himself, or been distinguished that by this every Indian is enabled to communicate with his by some appellation bestowed by the tribe. Some of these brother of whatever nation or tribe, and hence perhaps has names are sufficiently amusing, as, for example, arisen the supposition that all speak a common language. who jumps over every one,” “ The very sweet man," “ The The mode of writing among Indians is entirely hieroglyphic, man of good sense,' “ No fool,”
The bird that goes to and is of course liable to wide misconstruction ; but they lay war,” He who strikes two at once," &c. The names of down maps with no mean degree of accuracy, and the chiefs women are not always inelegant. Take as a specimen of Inwear the boundaries of their hunting-grounds traced on their dian taste in this matter, The bending willow," “ The robes ; a counterpart being kept in the public lodge among pure fountain," “ The sweet-scented grass.". Others are such other records as the nation may possess, and these are scarcely so complimentary, as, “ The female bear,” “ The referred to if any dispute arise among neighbouring tribes. woman who lives in the bear's den," The creature that
Their manufactures are of course few and simple. Stones creeps,” &c. are cut into pestles and mortars, tomahawks, knives, pipes, The constancy with which an Indian endures tortures, is &c. ; pottery is formed for domestic purposes from the clays among the best known traits of his character, but his power furnished by all parts of their country ; mats are woven from of enduring labour has been less insisted on; nay, it has been grass or rushes, and blankets from the hair of the buffalo. denied by those who despair of the civilization of the race, or
These articles are mostly the work of the women, who with who believe that its destruction is a consequence inevitable to the children plant, cultivate, and gather in the crops, collect the white man's progress ; but those who so judge know little wild rice and pash-e-quah, a large bulbous root, in form like of our Red brothers. We could adduce many facts in proof of the sweet potato and in taste like the chesnut, but more juicy. this, were our space not wholly exhausted; but we must defer Nuts of many sorts, several kinds of plums, osage oranges, these, as well as the account we had purposed giving of the gooseberries, strawberries, and many sorts of grapes, are also very extraordinary religious ceremonies practised among collected in their season. Besides this, the women dress buffalo some of the tribes. We may, however, possibly return to the skins, procure wood and water, and in some tribes fetch home subject at some other time. the game which the hunter, having tracked and killed, then leaves to their further disposal. Beaver and other skins, belts of wampum, and coloured
THE IRISH FIDDLER, shells ground to an oval form, serve as coin ; but the most important wealth of the Indian is in his horses and dogs, which assist him in the chase, and of which some possess great What a host of light-hearted associations are revived by that numbers. Many tribes of Indians are exceedingly bold and living fountain of fun and frolic, an Irish fiddler! Every thing expert horsemen, the Camanchees more particularly, many of connected with him is agreeable, pleasant, jolly. All his anecwhom perform feats of dexterity on their wild horses that dotes, songs, jokes, stories, and secrets, bring us back from would astonish our boldest equestrians. These men are often the pressure and cares of life, to those happy days and nights seen to throw themselves on one side of their horses, to avoid when the heart was as light as the heel, and both beat time to the arrows of an enemy or the attack of an enraged buffalo, in the exhilarating sound of his fiddle. such a manner that the extremity of one foot only seems to The old harper was a character looked upon by the Irish hold by the animal, and that while he continues to move at rather as a musical curiosity, than a being specially created full speed ; nay, some have been even known to shoot arrows to contribute to their enjoyment. There was something about while in that position, the tenure of which is altogether incon- him which they did not feel to be in perfect sympathy with their ceivable to the European rider.
habits and amusements. He was above them, not of them; Their weapons for hunting are lances five or six feet long, and although they respected him, and treated him kindly, yet and tipped with stone or the bone of some animal, and bows was he never received among them with that spontaneous with arrows similarly pointed. The buffalo is sometimes ebullition of warmth and cordiality with which they welcomed hunted by men who have partially concealed their persons in their own musician, the fiddler. The harper, in fact, belonged the skin of the white wolf, and who creep to within shot of to the gentry, and to the gentry they were willing to leave their game by favour of this disguise ; for the buffalo, accus- him. They listened to bis music when he felt disposed to play tomed to the white wolf, and safe from his attack unless, for them, but it only gratified their curiosity, instead of enwhen, separated from the herd, he becomes the prey of a pack, livening their hearts--a fact sufficiently evident from the cir. permits the approach of the Indian thus masked, the latter cumstance of their seldom attempting to dance to it. This being careful to keep to leeward of his game, whose scent is preference, however, of the fiddle to the harp, is a feeling gevery acute.
nerated by change of times and circumstances, for it is well Indians sometimes drive whole herds of buffalo, elk, and I known that in days gone by, when Irish habits were purer,
BY W. CARLETON.
older, and more hereditary than they are now, the harp was by their influence. Indeed, he may be said with truth to pass the favourite instrument of young and old, of high and low. through none but the festivals of life, to hear nothing but
The only instrument that can be said to rival the fiddle, is mirth, to feel nothing but kindness, and to communicate nothe bagpipe ; but every person knows that Ireland is a loving thing but happiness to all around him. He is at once the country, and that at our fairs, dances, weddings, and other places source and the centre of all good and friendly feelings. By of amusement, Paddy and his sweetheart are in the habit of him the aged man forgets his years, and is agreeably cheated indulging in a certain quiet and affectionate kind of whisper, back into youth ; the labourer snatches a pleasant moment the creamy tones of which are sadly curdled by the sharp jar from his toil, and is happy; the care-worn ceases to remember of the chanter. It is not, in fact, an instrument adapted for the anxieties that press him down; the boy is enraptured love-making. The drone is an enemy to sentiment, and it is with delight, and the child is charmed with a pleasure that he an unpleasant thing for a pretty blushing girl to find herself feels to be wonderful. put to the necessity of bawling out her consent at the top of Surely such a man is important, as filling up with enjoyment her lungs, which she must do, or have the ecstatic words lost in so many of the painful pauses in human misery. He is a its drowsy and monotonous murmur. The bagpipe might do thousand times better than a politician, and is a true philosofor war, to which, with a slight variation, it has been applied; pher without knowing it. Every man is his friend, unless it but in our opinion it is only fit to be danced to by an assembly be a rival fiddler, and he is the friend of every man, with the of people who are hard of hearing. Indeed, we have little same exception. Every house, too, every heart, and every doubt but its cultivation might be introduced with good effect hand, is open to him; he never knows what it is to want a bed, as a system of medical treatment, suitable to the pupils of a a dinner, or a shilling. Good heavens ! what more than this deaf and dumb institution ; for if any thing could bring them can the cravings of a human heart desire! For my part, to the use of their ears, its sharp and stiletto notes surely I do not know what others might aim at; but I am of opinion would effect that object.
that in such a world, as this, the highest proof of a wise man The fiddle, however, is the instrument of all others most would be, a wish to live and die an Irish fiddler. essential to the enjoyment of an Irishman. Dancing and And yet, alas! there is no condition of life without some love are very closely connected, and of course the fiddle is remote or contingent sorrow. Many a scene have I witnessed never thought of or heard, without awakening the tenderest connected with this very subject, that would wring the tears and most agreeable emotions. Its music, soft, sweet, and out of any eye, and find a tender pulse in the hardest heart. cheerful, is just the thing for Paddy, who under its influ. It is indeed a melancholy alternative that devotes the poor ence partakes of its spirit, and becomes soft, sweet, and sightless lad to an employment that is ultimately productive : cheerful himself. The very tones of it act like a charm upon of so much happiness to himself and others. This alternative him, and produce in his head such a bland and delightful in- is seldom resorted to, unless when some poor child—perhaps a toxication, that he finds himself making love just as naturally favourite—is deprived of sight by the terrible ravages of the as he would eat his meals. It opens all the sluices of his heart, small-pox. In life there is scarcely any thing more touching pats mercury in his veins, gives honey to a tongue that was, than to witness in the innocent invalid the first effects, both Heaven knows, sufficiently sweet without it, and gifts him upon himself and his parents, of this woeful privation. The with a pair of feather heels that Mercury might envy; and utter helplessness of the pitiable darkling, and his total depen. to crown all, endows him, while pleading his cause in a quiet dence upon those around him—his unacquaintance with the corner, with a fertility of invention, and an easy unembarrassed relative situation of all the places that were familiar to himassurance, which nothing can surpass. In fact, with great his tottering and timid step, and his affecting call of “ Mammy, respect for my friend Mr Bunting, the fiddle it is that ought where are you?" joined to the bitter consciousness on her to be our national instrument, as it is that which is most part that the light of affection and innocence will never sparclosely and agreeably associated with the best and happiest kle in those beloved eyes again—all this constitutes a scene of impulses of the Irish heart. The very language of the people deep and bitter sorrow. When, however, the sense of his themselves is a proof of this ; for whilst neither harp nor bag- bereavement passes away, and the cherished child grows up pipe is ever introduced as illustrating peculiarities of feeling by to the proper age, a fiddle is procured for him by his parents, if any reference to their influence, the fiddle is an agreeable in they are able, and if not, a subscription is made up among their strument in their hands, in more senses than one. Paddy's friends and neighbours to buy him one. All the family, with highest notion of flattery towards the other sex is boldly ex- tears in their eyes, then kiss and take leave of him; and his mo. pressed by an image drawn from it, for when he boasts that ther, taking him by the hand, leads him, as had been previously he can, bị honied words, impress such an agreeable delusion arranged, to the best fiddler in the neighbourhood, with whom upon his sweetheart as to make her imagine that there is a he is left as an apprentice. There is generally no fee required, fiddler on every rib of the house," there can be no metaphor con- but he is engaged to hand his master all the money he can ceived more strongly or beautifully expressive of the charm make at dances, from the time he is proficient enough to play which flows from the tones of that sweet instrument. Paddy, at them. Such is the simple process of putting a blind boy in however, is very often hit by his own metaphor, at a time the way of becoming acquainted with the science of melody. when he least expects it. When pleading his cause, for in- In my native parish there were four or five fiddlers_all stance, and promising golden days to his fair one, he is not good in their way; but the Paganini of the district was the unfrequently met by, * Åy, ay, it's all very well now; you're far-famed Mickey M.Rorey. Where Mickey properly lived, I sugary enough, of coorse ; but wait tilt we'd be a year never could actually discover, and for the best reason in the married, an' maybe, like so many others that promised what world—he was not at home once in twelve months. As Colley you do, you'd never come home to me widout · hangin' up your Cibber says in the play, he was “a kind of a here-and-thercian fiddle behind the door ;'” by which she means to charge him -a stranger nowhere.” This, however, mattered little ; for with the probability of being agreeable when abroad, but though perpetually shifting day after day from place to place, morose in his own family.
yet it somehow happened that nobody ever was at a loss where Having thus shown that the fiddle and its music are mixed to find him. The truth is, he never felt disposed to travel up so strongly with our language, feelings, and amusements, incog, because he knew that his interest must suffer by doing it is now time to say something of the fiddler. In Ireland it so; the consequence was, that wherever he went, a little is impossible, on looking
through all the classes of society, to nucleus of local fame always attended him, which rendered it find any individual so perfectly free from care, or, in stronger an easy matter to find his whereabouts. words, so completely happy, as the fiddler, especially if he be Mickey was blind from his infancy, and, as usual, owed to blind, which he generally is. His want of sight circumscribes the small-pox the loss of his eyesight. He was about the his other wants,
and, whilst it diminishes his enjoyments, not middle size, of rather a slender make, and possessed an intelonly renders him unconscious of their loss, but gives a greater ligent countenance, on which beamed that singular expression zest to those that are left him, simple and innocent as they of inward serenity so peculiar to the blind. His temper was are. He is in truth a man whose lot in life is happily cast, sweet and even, but capable of rising through the buoyancy of and whose lines have fallen in pleasant places. The phase of his own humour to a high pitch of exhilaration and enjoyment. lifo which is presented to him, and in which he moves, is one The dress he wore, as far as I can remember, was always the of innocent mirth and harmless enjoyment. Marriages, wed- same in colour and fabric-to wit, a brown coat, a sober-tinted dings, dances, and merry-makings of all descriptions, create cotton waistcoat, grey stockings, and black corduroys. Poor the atmosphere of mirth and happiness which he ever breathes. Mickey! I think I see him before me, his head erect, as the With the dark designs, the crimes, and outrages of mankind, heads of all blind men are, the fiddle-case under his left arm, he has nothing to do, and his light spirit is never depressed and bis hazel staff held out like a feeler, exploring with expe
rimental pokes the nature of the ground before him, even carried it on with an importance becoming the intimation just although some happy urchin leads him onward with an exult- given. Indeed, I remember the time when I watched one of ing eye; an honour of which he will boast to his companions for them, which I was so happy as to receive from him, day and many a mortal month to come.
night, with the hope of being able to report that it was grow. The first time I ever heard Mickey play was also the first ing larger ; for my firm belief was, that in due time it would I ever heard a fiddle. Well and distinctly do I remember the reach the usual size. occasion. The season was summer—but summer was summer As we went along, Mickey, with his usual tact, got out of then--and a new house belonging to Frank Thomas had been us all the information respecting the several courtships of the finished, and was just ready to receive him and his family. neighbourhood that had reached us, and as much, too, of the The floors of Irish houses in the country generally consist åt village gossip and scandal as we knew. first of wet clay; and when this is sufficiently well smoothed Nothing can exceed the overflowing kindness and affection and hardened, a dance is known to be an excellent thing to with which the Irish fiddler is received on the occasion of a bind and prevent them from cracking: On this occasion the dance or merry-making; and to do him justice he loses no opevening had been appointed, and the day was nearly half ad- portunity of exaggerating his own importance. From habit, vanced, but no appearance of the fiddler. The state of excite- and his position among the people, his wit and power of rement in which I found myself could not be described. The partee are necessarily cultivated and sharpened. Not one of name of Mickey M.Rorey had been ringing in my ears for God his jokes ever fails—a circumstance which improves his humour knows how long, but I had never seen him, or even heard his mightily; for nothing on earth sustains it so much as knowing, fiddle. Every two minutes I was on the top of a little emi- that, whether good or bad, it will be laughed at. Mickey, by nence looking out for him, my eyes straining out of their soc- the way, was a bachelor, and, though blind, was able, as he kets, and my head dizzy with the prophetic expectation of himself used to say, to see through his ears better than anrapture and delight. Human patience, bowever, could bear other could through the eyes. He knew every voice at once, this painful suspense no longer, and I privately resolved to and every boy and girl in the parish by name, the moment he find Mickey, or perish. I accordingly proceeded across the heard them speak. hills, a distance of about three miles, to a place called On reaching the house he is bound for, he either partakes Kilnahushogue, where I found him waiting for a guide. At of, or at least is offered, refreshment, after which comes the this time I could not have been more than seven years of age; ecstatic moment to the youngsters : but all this is done by due and how I wrought out my way over the lonely hills, or and solemn preparation. First he calls for a pair of scissors, through what mysterious instinct I was led to him, and that with which he pares or seems to pare his nails; then asks for by a path too over which I had never travelled before, must a piece of rosin, and in an instant half a dozen boys are off at be left unrevealed, until it shall please that Power which guides a break-neck pace, to the next shoemaker's, to procure it; the bee to its home, and the bird for thousands of miles whilst in the meantime he deliberately pulls a piece out of his through the air, to disclose the principle upon which it is ac- pocket and rosins his bow. But, heavens! what a ceremony complished.
the opening of that fiddle-case is ! The manipulation of the On our return home I could see the young persons of both blind man as he runs his hand down to the key-hole—the turning sexes flying out to the little eminence I spoke of, looking of the key—the taking out of the fiddle—the twang twangeagerly towards the point we travelled from, and immediately and then the first ecstatic sound, as the bow is drawn across scampering in again, clapping their hands, and shouting with the strings; then comes a screwing; then a delicious saw or delight. Instantly the whole village was out, young and two; again another screwing-wang twang-and away he old, standing for a moment to satisfy themselves that the in- goes with the favourite tune of the good woman, for such is the telligence was correct ; after which, about a dozen of the etiquette upon these occasions. The house is immediately youngsters sprang forward, with the speed of so many ante- thronged with the neighbours, and a preliminary dance is taken, lopes, to meet us, whilst the elders returned with a soberer but in which the old folks, with good-humoured violence, are lite not less satisfied manner into the houses. Then commenced rally dragged out, and forced to join. Then come the conthe usual battle, as to who should be honoured by permission gratulations---"Ah, Jack, you could do it wanst,” says Mickey, to carry the fiddle-case. Oh! that fiddle-case! For seven “an' can still; you have a kick in you yet.” “Why, Mickey, i long years it was an honour exclusively allowed to myself, seen dancin' in my time,” the old man will reply, his brow rewhenever Mickey attended a dance any where at all near us; laxed by a remnant of his former pride, and the hilarity of the and never was the Lord Chancellor's mace-to which, by the moment, “but you see the breath isn't what it used to be wid way, with great respect for his lordship, it bore a considerable me, when I could dance the Baltehorum Jig on the bottom of resemblance-carried with a prouder heart or a more exulting a ten-gallon cask. But I think a glass o'whisky will do us no eye. But so it is
harm afther that. Heighho!-well, well— I'm sure I thought “ These little things are great to little men.'
my dancin' days wor over.'
“ Bedad anyou wor matched any how," rejoined the fiddler. “Blood alive, Mickey, you're welcome !" • How is every “Molshy carried as light a heel as ever you did ; sorra a woman bone of you, Mickey? Bedad we gev you up."
of her years ever I seen could cut the buckle wid her. You didn't give you up, Mickey; never heed him; sure we knew would know the tune on her feet still.” very well you'd not desart the Towny boys--whoo !-Fol de “Ah, Mickey, the thruth is,” the good woman would say, rol lol!" **Ah, Mickey, won't you sing " There was a wee
we have no sich dancin' now as there was in my days. Thry devil come over the wall ?'" “ To be sure he will, but wait that glass," till he comes home and gets his dinner first. Is't off an empty “But as good fiddlers, Molshy, eh? Here's to you both, and stomach you'd have him to sing?" "Mickey, give me the fiddle long may ye live to shake the toe! Whoo! bedad that's great case, won't you, Mickey?" “No, to me, Mickey.” “Never stuff.
sit down, Jack, till I give you your ould faheed them, Mickey: you promised it to me at the dance in vourite, • Cannie Soogah.' Carntaul."
These were happy moments and happy times, which might Aisy, boys, aisy. The truth is, none of yez can get the well be looked upon as picturing the simple manners of country fiddle-case. Shibby, my fiddle, hasn't been well for the last day life with very little of moral shadow to obscure the cheerfulor two, and can't bear to be carried by any one barrin' myself." ness which lit up the Irish heart and hearth into humble hap
“Blood alive! sick is it, Mickey ?-an' what ails her?" piness. Mickey, with his usual good nature, never forgot the “Why, some o' the doctors says there's a frog in her, an' younger portion of his audience. After entertaining the old others that she has the cholic ; but I'm goin' to give her a and full-grown, he would call for a key, one end of which he dose of balgriffauns when I get up to the house above. Ould placed in his mouth, in order to make the fiddle sing for the Harry Connolly says she's with fiddle ; an'if that's true, boys, children their favourite song, beginning with maybe some o' yez won't be in luck. I'll be able to spare a young fiddle or two among yez."
“Oh! grand-mamma, will you squeeze my wig?” Many a tiny hand was clapped, and many an eye was lit This he did in such a manner, through the medium of the key, up with the hope of getting a young fiddle; for gospel itself that the words seemed to be spoken by the instrument, and not was never looked upon to be more true than this assertion of by himself. After this was over, he would sing us, to his own Mickey's. And no wonder. The fact is, he used to amuse accompaniment, another favourite, “ There was a wee devil himself by making small fiddles of deal and horse-hair, which looked over the wall,” which generally closed that portion of the he carried about with him as presents for such youngsters as entertainment so kindly designed for us. he took a fancy to. This he made a serious business of, and Upon those moments I have often witnessed marks of deep
“ No, we
BY J. U. U.
and pious feeling, occasioned by some memory of the absent or to his fiddle. His hopes and pleasures, though limited, are full. the dead, that were as beautiful as they were affecting. If, for His heart is necessarily light, for he comes in contact with the instance, a favourite son or daughter happened to be removed best and brightest side of life and nature; and the consequence by death, the father or mother, remembering the air which was is, that their mild and mellow lights are reflected on and from loved best by the departed, would pause a moment, and with himself. I am ignorant whether poor Mickey is dead or not; a voice full of sorrow, say, “ Mickey, there is one tune that I but I dare say he forgets the boy to whose young spirit he would like to hear ; I love to think of it, and to hear it; I do, communicated so much delight, and who often danced with a for the sake of them that's gone-my darlin' son that's lyin' low : buoyant and careless heart to the pleasant notes of his fiddle. it was he that loved it. His ear is closed against it now; but Mickey M'Rorey, farewell! Whether living or dead, peace for his sake-ay, for your sake, avourneen machree-we will be with you ! hear it wanst more.
There is another character in Ireland essentially different Mickey always played such tunes in his best style, and amidst from the mere fiddler-I mean the country dancing-master. In a silence that was only broken by sobs, suppressed moanings, a future number of the Journal I will give a sketch of one who and the other tokens of profound sorrow. These gushes, how- was eminent in his line. Many will remember him when I name ever, of natural feeling soon passed away. In a few minutes the BUCKRAM-Back. smiles returned, the mirth broke out again, and the lively dance went on as if their hearts had been incapable of such affection for the dead_affection at once so deep and tender. But many
THE PASSING BELL. a time the light of cheerfulness plays along the stream of Irish feeling, when cherished sorrow lies removed from the human
With its measured pause, and its long-drawn wail, eye far down from the surface.
The minster bell swings on the gale, These preliminary amusements being now over, Mickey is
And saddens the vale with its solemn toll, conducted to the dance-house, where he is carefully installed in the best chair, and immediately the dancing commences.
That passeth away like a passing soul
Pulse after pulse still diminishing on, It is not my purpose to describe an Irish dance here, having
Till another rings forth for the dead and gone. done it more than once elsewhere. It is enough to say that Mickey is now in his glory; and proud may the young man be The minute-sound of that mourning bell who fills the honourable post of his companion, and sits next Is the lord's of the valley—the rich man's knell : him. He is a living storehouse of intelligence, a travelling While it swells o'er his lawns and his woodlands bright, directory for the parish the lover's text-book
He breathes not, hears not, nor sees the light : woman's best companion ; for where is the courtship going on On the couch of his ease he lies stiff and wanof which he is not cognizant ? where is there a marriage on In the midst of his pomp he is dead and gone. the tapis, with the particulars of which he is not acquainted ? He is an authority whom nobody would think of questioning.
The pride hath passed from his haughty browIt is now, too, that he scatters his jokes about; and so correct
Where are his plans and high projects now? and well trained is his ear, that he can frequently name the
Another lord in his state is crowned,
To level his castles with the ground; young man who dances, by the peculiarity of his step. " Ah ha! Paddy Brien, you're there ? Sure I'd know the
Respect and terror pass reckless on
His frowns and favours are dead and gone. sound of your smoothin'-irons any where. Is it thrue, Paddy, that you wor sint for down to Errigle Keerogue, to kill the Had he wisdom, and wealth, and fame, clocks for Dan M*Mahon? But, nabuklish! Paddy, what'll Mortal tongue shall forget his name:
Other hands shall disperse his store“ Is that Grace Reilly on the flure? Faix, avourneen, you can Earthly dream shall he dream no more : do it; devil o' your likes I see any where. I'll lay Shibby to a His chair is vacant-his way lies yon, penny trump that you could dance your own namesake_the To the formless cells of the dead and gone. Calleen dhas dhun, the bonny brown girl-upon a spider's cob. web, widout breakin' it. Don't be in a hurry, Grace dear, to
Passing bell, that dost sadly fling tie the knot ; I'll wait for you.”
Thy wailing wave on the air of spring, Several times in the course of the night a plate is brought
There is no voice in thy long, wild moan, round, and a collection made for the fiddler: this was the
To tell where the parted soul is flown,
To what far mansion it travels on moment when Mickey used to let the jokes fly in every direction. The timid he shamed into liberality, the vain he praised,
While thou tollest thus for the dead and gone. and the niggardly he assailed by open hardy satire ; all ma- Yet, bell of death, on the living air naged, however, with such an under-current of good humour, Thy tones come bound from the house of prayer that no one could take offence. No joke ever told better than They speak of the Valley of Shadow, trod that of the broken string. Whenever this happened at night, On a path once walked by the Son of God, Mickey would call out to some soft fellow, “Blood alive, Ned Whose word of promise inviteth on, Martin, will you bring me a candle ?-_I've broken a string.” Through the gate unclosed for the dead and gone. The unthinking young man, forgetting that he was blind, would take the candle in a hurry, and fetch it to him.
“ Faix, Ned, I knew you wor jist fit for't ; houldin' a candle CURRENT COIN OF CHINA. The only coin made in China to a dark man! Isn't he a beauty, boys ?--look at him, girls is the tchen, or cash, as it is called in Canton. It is composed as cute as a pancake.”
of base metal, having the date and reigning emperor's name It is unnecessary to say, that the mirth on such occasions stamped on it. According to Gutzlaff, they had coins of this was convulsive. Another similar joke was also played off by description a thousand years before our era. It is nearly as him against such as he knew to be ungenerous at the collection. large as an old shilling. There is a square hole in the centre,
" Paddy Smith, I want a word wid you. I'm goin' across to admit of a number of them being strung on a bamboo. the counthry as far as Ned Donnelly's, and I want you to help From seven to eight hundred of these, according to the exme along the road, as the night is dark.”
change, may be had for a Spanish dollar. Silver is the com"To be sure, Mickey. I'll bring you over as snug as if you mercial medium of barter; it is not coined, but passes by wor on a clane plate, man alive!"
weight, after being purified, when it is called sycee silver. It “ Thank you, Paddy; throth you've the dacency in you; an' | is then cast into lumps of one tael, or Chinese ounce, each, kind father for you, Paddy. Maybe I'll do as much for you the value of which in English money is about six shillings. some other time.”
When decimal parts are required, it is cut.
Spanish dollars Mickey never spoke of this until the trick was played are current in Canton, and they are also cut when required off, after which, he published it to the whole parish; and for lesser portions. Whenever one of these gets into the posPaddy of course was made a standing jest for being so silly session of a Chinese, he stamps his name on it ; hence in a as to think that night or day had any difference to a man who short time the Spanish marks become quite obliterated, and could not see.
then they are called chop dollars, and are melted into sycee Thus passed the life of Mickey M'Rorey, and thus pass the silver. Gold is like any other article of trade, and is not lives of most of his class, serenely and happily. As the sailor to used as a medium of barter, -Dr Fulton's Travelling Sketches his ship, the sportsman to his gun, so is the fiddler attached I in l'arious Countries,
you have ?"