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kindred though slightly different of sporting, in their tight blue stamp. In most of these instances, body-coats and high muslin cragrattez le
groom et vous trouverez le vats, but who are no longer capable flyman of some Brompton livery- of much equitation, and are seated stable, unless, indeed (shame to say!), on steady old hunters incapable of the servitor in question be, as he making a stumble or a mistake, and very often is, the father of the young cantering along at the easiest of woman after whom he rides. The ambles. Here, too, may occasiondemeanour of these miserable women ally be seen the Church equitant in exhibits the recklessness impelled by the person of a rosy-coloured bishop, shame—the intention of facing it with his episcopal legs covered with out;' and as they ride tardily along black gaiters, mounted on a safe, they stare with closed lips and inso- clever cob, and closely followed by a lent glance at all, male and female, well-fed groom in very sober livery. whom they meet. These are the Until the last few years there Anonymas whom certain writers were very few pedestrians in the like to patronize in print, and the Row, and these principally friends 'pretty horsebreakers,' whom some of the riders or connoisseurs in horsedistinguished painters select for the flesh, who would hang negligently subjects of their brushes. A ren- over the rails and discourse to each contre with them causes a great other in those mysterious whispers deal of curiosity on the part of lady which sporting men so much affect amazons, and a great deal of con- of the merits or demerits of the fusion on the part of gentlemen passing cattle. But the introduccavaliers-caused rather: the past tion from the Champs Elysées and tense, not the present. Thanks to the Bois de Boulogne of the light the genial criticisms of a free and and elegant wire chairs, expressly enlightened press, the subject is now adapted for out-of-door use, has fully understood in the most retired entirely changed the fashion, and and innocent classes of society. 'the thing' is now to hire a chair One would like, however, to see and sit and watch the passers-by, some letters of Mrs. Chapone on this both horse and foot. Nothing can topic; or to read what Little Bur- be pleasanter than this. You sit ney' would have written about it in amongst the best-dressed people in her ‘Diary;' or what Dr. Johnson town, the prettiest women and the would have remarked thereanent to greatest swells, and see the whole Topham Beauclerk or Bennet Lang- panorama of London out-door life ton.
unrolling itself before you. Year Besides the youth of both sexes, by year these chairs have increased all degrees of age are represented in number, until they are now a among the equestrians. Here may recognized institution of the Park, be seen pursy gentlemen of five- and afford a very fair summer liveand-forty, who laughed and grew lihood to their proprietors. One fat before the light of Banting row, sometimes
a double row, dawned upon the world, and who stretches from Hyde Park Corner are endeavouring by regular horse far up Rotten Row, and in the exercise to keep down corpulence bright sunlight the colours of the without depriving themselves of any bonnets, parasols, and dresses, harof the table's luxuries. They be- moniously mingled, give the effect stride strong, thickset, handsome of a brilliant and extensive bed of little cobs—that class of horse ad- tulips. In front of these sitters vertised by dealers as 'up to twenty wanders a perpetually varying stone—& drayhorse in miniature; crowd, men and women of all ages, and go pounding away with the full but all belonging to the richer intention of getting as much jolting classes, and all bent on relaxation as possible into a given quantity of and amusement. Nothing can be time. And there, too, may be seen pleasanter than this stroll, provided really old men, fine old boys who you have a companion, but the in their time have been great across man who would attempt it alone country, and who still retain a look must be bold indeed. To walk
quietly under the fire of a thousand pair of eyes, the handsomest and wickedest in London, requires an amount of moral courage which few possess: the unfortunate cynosure, once started, dare not retreat; but no sooner does he see or fancy he sees some one bend forward to whisper her neighbour, than he immediately considers himself the subject of the remark, is haunted by the horrible idea of a lump on his nose, a crack in his boot, a crease in his coat-Quelque chose ridicule ou bouffonne' (to use Théophile Gautier's favourite phrase), in his appearance, and, colouring to brightest crimson, he pursues his way amid the ill-suppressed titters of the crowd.
Once past the Serpentine Bridge, which was designed by Rennie, and erected in 1826, and we are in quite a different
We are, as
verdant boskage, stretched supine under the shadow of some of the giant elms and oaks, one could fancy oneself a hundred miles from London: the eye lights on nothing but greenery: from afar the hum of wheels and voices breaks upon the ear with a pleasant and soothing monotone; and were it not for the occasional flitting by of a lengthy Life-Guardsman exchanging sweet nothings with a dumpy housemaid, one might imagine oneself in a wood-such a wood as these gardens must have been in 1798, when a man was accidentally shot while the keepers were shooting foxes here! and his widow received a pension of 181. a year from the Board of Green Cloth.
Here may be met, wandering idly among the trees, painters mooning over the subjects of their pictures, and authors thinking of the elaboration of their plots; and here, too, may be found close-shaved gentlemen with little rolls of paper in their hands, to which they now and then refer, and who, from their writhings and gesticulations, you would take to be lunatics, if you did not know them to be actors who had walked over from Brompton or Kensington, their favourite resort, and were studying their parts in the quiet shades. Here are children playing on the greensward, and idlers-doers of nothing doing it well-extended on their backs, calmly gazing up to the sky. Happy the metropolis that has such a large and healthy lung! Good for all-for the rich to flaunt and flirt in, for the poor to take quiet rest and ease-is Hyde Park.
Where Kensington, high o'er the neighbouring
lands, Midst greens and sweets a regal fabric stands, And sees each spring luxuriant in her bowers, A snow of blossoms and a world of flowers; The dames of Britain oft in crowds repair To gravel walks and unpolluted air. Here, while the town in damps and darkness
lies, They breathe in sunshine and see azure skies; Each walk, with robes of various dyes bespread, Seems from afar a moving tulip bed; There, rich brocades and glossy damasks glow, And chintz, the rival of the showery bow.'
But save twice a week, and when the band of the Guards plays on Sundays, you would not find the brave show of company which old Tickell so pleasan describes. On the contrary, the grand old gardens are still and solemn. Lying in the