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HORAE NICOTIANÆ.

No I.

THOSE who are fond of observing the changes that take place in the manners and customs of nations, the sort of Periplus of the globe which particular fashions are at all times making, must of course be familiar with the travels of Paul Hentzner, a German Eruditus, who visited this island in the reign of Elizabeth. A translation of his book was published by Horace Walpole, at Strawberry hill; but as we have no copy of that in our possession, we must be excused if we quote from the original a short passage which strikes us, and will strike our readers, as containing as lively an instance of the mutability of modes as could well be wished for. This Bohemian travelling tutor stares at nothing so much in England as the fashion (misabile dictu!) of smoking tobacco. At that period it seems it was the custom for all " your gallants" to take their pipes with them when they went to the play-and, by the bye, the puffing of so many lusty performers must undoubtedly have been very serviceable to the manager in producing a seemly degree of nebulosity when battles were to be represented on the stage. It is amusing enough to observe the pains which our German takes to give his own countrymen some faint idea of an utensil which is now so familiar to them as the tobacco pipe-" Utuntur," says he," in hisce spectaculis, sicut et alibi ubicumque locorum sint Angli, herbâ nicotianá quam Americane idiomati tobaca nuncupant (Paetum alii dicunt) hoc modo frequentissimè. Fistulæ in hunc finem ex argillà factæ, orificio posteriori, dictam herbam, probe exsiccatam ita ut in pulverem facile ridigi possit, immittunt, et igni admoto accendunt, unde fumus ab anteriori parte ore attrahitur, qui per nares rursum tanquam per infurnibulum exit, et phlegma et capitisd efluxiones magnâ copiâ secum educit." In order to complete his picture of spectacular luxury, he adds, "circumferuntur insuper in hisce theatris varii fructus venales, ut poma, pyra, nuces, et pro ratione temporis, etiam vinum et cerevisia." Were nothing but the comfort of the indi

vidual spectator to be considered, we must own that we should very much approve of seeing this old fashion revived; and hesitate not to say, that even the pleasure we experienced in seeing our good friend Mackay enact his inimitable" Glasgow body" would have been still more exquisite, could he have been permitted to sit during the whole of his performance with the bowl of our Meerschaum in the one hand, and a jug of “ Giles' masterpiece" in the other.

The

The general contempt into which tobacco has fallen is viewed by us, in spite of our own private affection for the herb, with a sufficiently philosophical degree of composure, chiefly, perhaps, because we regard the prospect of its revival as neither a very doubtful nor a very distant one. present rage for travelling which leads so many hundreds of our young gentlemen on a dance from the Zuyderzee to the Hadriatic, sends back to us every returning year a host of proselytes to the use of the tube-who, not contented with a secret and furtive indulgence in the worship of their new idol, make it a point, in whatever company of good fellows they chance to find themselves, to celebrate, with all the ardent enthusiasm their natures enable them to display, the "Innocuos calices, et amicam Vatibus herbam Vimque datam folio, et laeti miracula fumi.”

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Nor, on mature consideration of the vast chaos of materials wherefrom this our regular creation is to be formed, have we been able to think of any more fitting or auspicious commencement, than a brief account of the most elaborate and comprehensive poem to which the Nicotian phantasy hath as yet given birth-we mean the hymnus tabaci, in two books, of the illustrious Dutch bard Raphael Thorius, master of arts.

This great work is composed in imitation of that of Lucretius "de rerum naturâ," and is indeed entitled, in addition to what we have already said"de Pato seu tobaco." The style of versification, however, which Thorius has adopted is more rich, in general, than that of the Roman-not indeed that the Batavian ever rises above the more splendid passages of his predecessor, but that throughout he seems to be more studious of maintaining an elevated and etherial spirit in his diction, Nothing can be finer than the commencement, in which he invokes (Pieridum loco) a certain celebrated smoking knight of Amsterdam, by name Paddæus, or Van Paddy. "Innocuous calices, et amicam vatibus herbam,

Vimque datam folio, et læti miracula fumi Aggredior. Tu qui censu decoratus Equestri Virtutem titulis, titulos virtutibus ornas, Antiquum et Phoebi nato promittis hon

erem,

Tu Paddæe fave: nec enim præstantior alter Morbifugæ varias vires agnoscere plantæ, Inque tubo genitas haurire et reddere nubes.

Da puer accensum selecto fictile Pato, Vt Phoebum ore bibam: quis enim sine

sumine Pæti

Digna canat Pato, et tantis se comparet

ausis ?"

sequences are depicted by the Dutch Lucretius in these affecting lines.

The poet next proceeds to the Muse of his subject, the legend of Tobacco. Bacchus, it seems, in his progress of triumphant warfare through the Mahratta country, was, on one occasion, reduced to great distress by a scarcity of wine. Without this neither he, nor Silenus, nor the Satyrs, nor the Bacchantes could, with the least vigour or comfort, pursue the tenor of their march. An old grenadier Satyr, who had served many campaigns in the woods of that quarter, recommends tobacco as a substitute, but he appears to have been very little qualified for the office he had underLaken, for both he and his companions begin with eating the leaf. The con

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Next morning they are disturbed by an assault of the enemy. Thorius does not tell very exactly who they were, or in what force they came, but Silenus no sooner sees them coming down the hill, than he issues a general order for every man to light his pipe, and so armed, he very boldly draws them beyond the lines, and advances to meet the foe. The horror which was felt by the Mexicans, the first time they saw Cortes and Pizarro on horseback, appears to have been inferior to what the enemies of Bacchus on this occasion experienced. The narrative is in very splendid style. "Erea sistra manu quatiunt, et tympana pulsant,

Vino acuunt iras resides, haustoque Tobaco Excludunt lethi faciem, suaque agmina cir

cum

Nube tegunt atra: spirantes naribus ignem Procedunt: medio glomeratur in æquore

nimbus

Igne micans, tonitruque fero, fumoque stupendus.

Ostento attonitos subitus pavor occupat Indos, Non homines sed furva rați de faucibus Orci Numina, consternati animo certamen ini

quum

Detrectant, trucibusque timent confligere

monstris. Pars fugit, et positis quærunt velocius armis,

Quam dare victoris mallet clementia, vitam; Pars orat veniam, parere et jussa modestis Imperiis patiente jugum cervice capessit ; After they discover the cause of their alarin, they feel considerably ashamed of themselves; but the mild and benignant conduct of their conquerors soon effectually reconciles them to their fate. Victors and vanquished sit down together in amity, and by way of putting the last touch to the tenderness of the scene, the poet represents them as exchanging pipes with each other-a truly Batavian token of affection..

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Sed pudet erroris, stulta et formidine tactos Extimuisse piget vani sufflamina fumi; Libertate dolent serva; solatur at illos Indulgentis heri condita lepore potestas,

VOL V.

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-what sort of persons ought to smoke tobacco-fat or lean, sanguine or adust, &c. &c. and he determines, apparently with much propriety, that those who have most moisture to spare ought to be the most diligent consumers of a commodity which has so strong a tendency to exhaust the salivatory organs. With equal good sense and good feeling Raphael decides, that nobody should smoke, merely because pipes are introduced— as it would appear a very common manifestation of the mauvaise honte of young inexperienced Dutchmen. "Sunt qui fumum ideo, ut potent tuntummodo, potant,

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We shall quote his adieu to the too delightful herb, not doubting that, so of our paper as of our pipe, the last will be the sweetest :

A Farewell to Tobacco. "May the Babylonish curse Strait confound my stammering verse, If I can a passage see In this word perplexity, Or a fit expression find, Or a language to my mind, (Still the phrase is wide or scant) To take leave of thee, GREAT PLANT! Or in any terms relate Half my love, or half my hate: For I hate, yet love, thee so, The plain truth will seem to be That, whichever thing I shew, A constrain'd hyperbole, And the passion to proceed

More from a mistress than a weed.

"Sooty retainer to the vine,
Bacchus' black servant, negro fine;
Sorcerer, that mak'st us dote upon
Thy begrimed complexion,
And, for thy pernicious sake,
More and greater oaths to break
Than reclaimed lovers take

'Gainst women: thou thy siege dost lay
Much too in the female way,
While thou suck'st the lab'ring breath
Faster than kisses or than death.

"Thou in such a cloud dost bind us,
That our worst foes cannot find us,
And ill fortune, that would thwart us,
Shoots at rovers, shooting at us;
While each man, thro' thy height'ning

steam,

Does like a smoking Etna seem,
And all about us does express
(Fancy and wit in richest dress)
A Sicilian fruitfulness.

"Thou through such a mist doth shew us, That our best friends do not know us,

And, for those allowed features,
Due to reasonable creatures,
Liken'st us to Chimeras,
Monsters that, who see us, fear us;
Worse than Cerberus or Geryon,
Or, who first lov'd a cloud, Ixion.
"Bacchus we know, and we allow
That but by reflex can'st shew
His tipsy rites. But what art thou,
What his deity can do,
As the false Egyptian spell
Aped the true Hebrew miracle?
Some few vapours thou may'st raise,
The weak brain may serve to amaze,
But to the reins and nobler heart
Can'st nor life nor heat impart.
Brother of Bacchus, later born,
The old world was sure forlorn,

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Wanting thee, that aidest more The god's victories than before All his panthers, and the brawls Of his piping Bacchanals. These, as stale, we disallow, Or judge of thee meant: only thou His true Indian conquest art; And, for ivy round his dart, The reformed god now weaves A finer thyrsus of thy leaves. "Scent to match thy rich perfume Chemic art did ne'er presume Through her quaint alembic strain, None so sov'reign to the brain. Nature, that did in thee excel, Fram'd again no second smell. Roses, violets, but toys For the smaller sort of boys, Or for greener damsels meant ; Thou art the only manly scent. "Stinking'st of the stinking kind, Filth of the mouth and fog of the mind, Africa, that brags her foyson, Breeds no such prodigious poison, Henbane, nightshade, both together, Hemlock, aconite

"Nay, rather, Plant divine, of rarest virtue; Blisters on the tongue would hurt you. "Twas but in a sort I blam'd thee; None e'er prosper'd who defam'd thee; Irony all, and feign'd abuse, Such as perplext lovers use, At a need, when, in despair, To paint forth their fairest fair, Or in part but to express That exceeding comeliness Which their fancies doth so strike, They borrow language of dislike; And, instead of Dearest Miss, Jewel, Honey, Sweetheart, Bliss, And those forms of old admiring, Call her Cockatrice and Siren, Basilisk, and all that's evil, Witch, Hyena, Mermaid, Devil, Ethiop, Wench, and Blackamoor, Monkey, Ape, and twenty more; Friendly Trait'ress, loving Foe,Not that she is truly so, But no other way they know A contentment to express, Borders so upon excess, That they do not rightly wot Whether it be pain or not. "Or, as men, constrain'd to part With what's nearest to their heart, While their sorrow's at the height, Lose discrimination quite,

And their hasty wrath let fall,
To appease their frantic gall,
On the darling thing whatever,
Whence they feel it death to sever,
Though it be, as they, perforce,
Guiltless of the sad divorce.

"For I must (nor let it grieve thee, Friendliest of plants, that I must) leave thee. For thy sake, TOBACCO, I, Would do any thing but die, And but seek to extend my days Long enough to sing thy praise. But, as she, who once hath been A king's consort, is a queen Ever after, nor will bate Any title of her state, Though a widow, or divorced, So I, from thy converse forced, The old name and style retain, A right Katherine of Spain; And a seat, too, 'mongst the joys Of the blest Tobacco Boys; Where, though I, by sour physician, Am debarr'd the full fruition Of thy favours, I may catch Some collateral sweets, and snatch Sidelong odours, that give life Like glances from a neighbour's wife; And still live in the by-places And the suburbs of thy graces;. And in thy borders take delight, An unconquer'd Canaanite.

In our next paper of this series, we shall consider, at some length, the effects which have probably been produced on the literati and churchmen of England by the disuse of the Tobacco Pipe; illustrating the subject by copious quotations from a curious MS. collection of Oxford jeux-d'esprit, which we were so fortunate as to pick up at Mr John Ballantyne's a few weeks ago; and concluding the whole with an original ode of Mr Odoherty, composed in the Cheshire Cheese Tavern, Fleet Street, in the year 1814, and addressed, as might well befit its theme, to no less a personage than that prince of puffers-Field Marshal Blucher. We shall also insert "An Elegy inscribed to Miss Foreman, by William Wastle, Esq." and "Lines written on seeing a spark fall from Mr Hogg's pipe, by R. P. Gillies, Esq.

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