Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

Cuffey shall be heard to exclaim, He great blackguard thathe got no negur.

Where his horse? He alway walk.

I found my friend Doctor De Bow in high repute at Charleston, and not without the hope that he should soon keep his carriage. Scribimus docti indoctique. He was busy in writing a piece for the Medical Repository at New-York; that is, he was communicating his thoughts in a letter to the great Doctor Mitchel. His object was to undermine the fame of the Charleston Physicians, by exposing the impropriety of their treatment in the Croup ; a complaint uncommonly prevalent in the southern States of the Union. - This treatise,

whispered the Doctor, will make me be called “in to children, and if I once get the child for a “ patient, I shall soon have the parents. Oh! " that I could only express my thoughts on pa

per! I would carry every thing before me. “ But writing and talking require very different “ qualifications. Impudence will make an ora“ tor; but to write well requires reading digested 6 by reflection."

The Doctor entreated I would lend him my assistance to write his Essay on the Croup. I begged to be excused, by professing my utter unacquaintance with the mode of treating the disease.

“No matter, said the Doctor. How to treat the “ disease no man knows better than I ; but treating “it, and writing a treatise on it, are things widely

“ different. Come ! let me dictate to you the, “heads of the discourse, and do you lengtbify and “ ramify them secundum artem into a treause. “ Quote a good deal of Latin, and dignify your “ style with all the hard words you can remem“ber. But let the title be powerful; let it smite the eye

of the reader with irresistible force. For “ the Medical Repository! New, but unanswera"ble, objections against the present mode of treat

ing the Croup, by the Physicians of Charleston ; “ communicated in a Letter to Dr. Mitchel, by W. De Bow, M. D.- Nullius addictus jurare in 55 verba magistri !

Bravo, cried I. And now Doctor for a few words of introduction to the philippic.

That, sir, you shall have ; I never could endure a play without a prologue. Why, say, (but write the first word in capitals,) “PHYSICIANS, “however they may be established and in vogue,

are yet liable to be mistaken in their prognostics “ and diagnostics.

Humanum est errare !" The Doctor was here interrupted by a negroboy, who called him to attend his master in the last stage of the yellow fever. The Doctor immediately slipped on a black coat, put his enormous spectacles on his nose, and snatching up his goldheaded-cane, followed the negro down stairs.

The Doctor being gone, it was not possible to do justice to the Treatise on the Croup; but,

1

finding myself disposed to write something, I addressed my friend in an Ode. The Doctor was about to embark for the Havannah, as Surgeon of a ship; and his approaching voyage furnished me with a hint.

ODE TO WILLIAM DE BOW, M. D.

SINCE on the ocean's boundless deep,

Once more impell’d by fate you go,
The Muse the trembling wire would sweep,

And soft invoke each gale to blow.

Long has it been our doom to roam,

With hearts by friendship's cement bound, (The world at large our only home)

O'er many a wide expanse of ground.

At PHILADELPHIA's sad confine,

Where death stalk'd round with aspect wild,
We saw the widow vainly pine,

And heard the mother mourn her child :

While desolation mark'd the scene,

And groans of dying fill'd each gale,
Where dance no more rejoic'd the green,

Nor song re-echo'd from the dale,

May no such griefs again demand

The sigh of pity from thy breast,
But jocund pleasure's mirthful band,

Sooth ev'ry baleful care to rest.

Then festive let thy moments flow,

While round thee roars the briny flood;
May ev'ry breeze auspicious blow,

And nought provoke the wat'ry god,

CG

[ocr errors]

Having leisure for some literary undertaking, I issued a prospectus for the publication of two Voyages to the East-Indies. The work was to be comprised in an octavo volume, and delivered to subscribers for two dollars. Mr. Drayton, without hesitation, subscribed for ten copies; and in a few weeks I could boast a long list of subscribers from the circles of fashion.

Shortly after, the Farmer's Museum, published in New Hampshire, was found to contain a curious notice on the subject; “ The Translator of Buonaparte's Campaign, whose poetry we have praised in a former Museum, has issued a subscription-paper, for the publication of Two

Voyages to the East-Indies. From the genius “ of this Gentleman, we have the strongest reason “ to conclude, that his Work will be a pleasing

production. But these are coster-monger times “ for his book, and ere the date of fresh literary

disappointment begin, he should remember " that if in any of the peddling streets of Charles

ton, Philadelphia, Boston, or New-York, he “ were to expose for sale a single bale of Gurrahs, or Hummum, it would advance his fortune and

reputation more than by writing volumes of "instructive or amusing narrative. We wish “this writer success; to ensure it, let him direct “his bookseller to make a shipment to England of “ the whole impression.”

It is difficult to say, whether this encomium of

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

66

112

Mr. Dennie promoted or retarded the subscription to the volume; but it was of little consequence, for notwithstanding my friend George wrote a poetical epistle for the work, I contented myself with abridging it for my own amusement. '

To avoid the fever, which every summer commits its ravages at Charleston, Mr. Drayton removed with his family in July to a convenient house on Sullivan's Island. The front windows commanded a view of the Atlantic, whose waves broke with fury not a hundred yards from the door. It is almost superfluous to observe, that Sullivan's Island lies opposite to Charleston, at the distance of eight miles.

In the garden on our premises, I took possession of a neat little box, which served me for a seminary, and house of repose.--Here I was gratified with the company of Mr. George, who came to visit me from George-town. Not more joyous was the meeting of Flaccus and Maro, at the Appian Way:

0! qui complexus, et gaudia quanta fuerunt ! He was received with every elegance of urbanity by Mr. and Mrs. Drayton ; but he compared our situation to Æneas among the Greeks ; vidimus immixri Danais haud numine nostro. So natural is it for a wit to ridicule his host:

Passage-boats are always to be procured from Sullivan's Island to Charleston, and I was introduced by my friend to an Irisb Clergyman, of the

« AnteriorContinuar »