The Ole ‘Present-Participle Animal’ It Is: A Notice to Publicans on Politicised Nomenclature

IMPORTANT TO PUBLICANS AND SINNERS!—We understand, that, in the plentiude of their indignation at the “base, tyrannical, and unconstitutional” policy of the Whig Cabinet towards Ireland the patriotic and enlightened leaders of the various Political Unions throughout the country are about to issue edicts commanding the immediate destruction of all sign boards bearing the effigy of any member of the present “detestable Whig Administration”—whether it be that of Earl Grey, Lord Brougham, Lord Althorp, or Lord John Russell, which, a few short months ago, were so exultingly hoisted on high to the exclusion even of Majesty itself. The penalty attached to non-compliance with the famous edict in question is understood to be an immediate withdrawal of custom from the offending publicans; and as the most influential of the Unionists are known to be most effective swillers both of cheap whisky and sour beer, there can be little doubt that the command will be most religiously complied with. Alas! for the ill-starred Whigs, when they are thus treated by their late slavish worshippers. The next order to be issued will, we understand, consign to the flames all the transparencies and flags which contain portraitures of the ugly phizogs of these “treacherous and tyrannical Whigs.”

Glasgow Courier, March 1833

A Number of Sadly Incorrect Predictions on American Prosperity (1789)

Extract of a letter from Philadelphia, Aug. 23.

“Congress is still sitting at New York, and from the multiplicity of business before them, there is no likelihood of the session’s soon closing. We are curious to know what foreigners will say of our new commercial arrangements. Among ourselves there is but one opinion, and that is favourable. To our own vessels, a preference is undoubtedly due; and among foreign vessels and merchandise, there is no discrimination in our import and tonnage acts, every nation being on the same footing. With respect to the duties themselves, they could not be laid lower, considering the demand of supplies, which the Committee appointed to give in an estimate state at upwards of eight millions of dollars.

“Accustomed to disappointment in hopes of improvement in politics and commerce, we feel a reluctance to entertaining very sanguine wishes. Yet appearances encourage the expectation of the fœderal government’s acting with the energy and effect that will give it respectability. The prejudices and animosities created by the late contest are gradually dying away ; and to the idleness and dissipation flowing from the same source, industry has in a great degree succeeded. A progress has also been made in manufactures of various kinds that was not expected ; and the persevering in them affords a strong presumption of those concerned deriving advantage.

“Throughout the union, the public opinion on matters of government has of late experienced rapid changes. Vice President Adams, in his highly esteemed work, has fully demonstrated the absurdity of democracy, and the superior excellence of a mix form, such as that of Britain. His deductions from premises admitted as just, have abated much of the popular aversion to monarchy ; and as every thing matures quickly in our transatlantic soil, it would not surprise many, were United America to have a sovereign ear in the next century.

“In no one instance has our new administration given general satisfaction, more than in their conduct towards the Indians. The interests of those unfortunate people will be studiously attend ed to ; and they will be effectually protected against the lawless violence of the individuals or States, who wished to wrest their lands from them. This determination is dictated by policy as well humanity ; for it is now become the interest of the States to check, by every means short of violence, the erratic disposition of their citizens, who, when removed to the wilds beyond the mountains, cannot be regarded as of any value, in a political view.

The Glasgow Advertiser, 23 August 1789

Confession of an Eighteenth-Century Quidnunc; or, How was I to know your sister had died?

” Living out of the World”
To the PRINTER.

Sir,
ABOUT two month ago I went to the country to pay a visit to a friend in a remote county; and though I am much of what may be called “a newspaper man,” I never thought of ordering my papers to be sent down to me. To my utter astonishment, my rusticlandlord did not take in own newspaper; so there was I, stuck down, with my friend in the country–knowing no more of what passed in town than if I had been in Lapland. Intending every day should be my last, I went on without ordering your, or any other paper, till two months had passed away, at which period I returned to town. And there, Sir, I was quite a new man, and just as if I had dropped down from the clouds. Every day I heard people talking of occurrences of which I knew nothing : Revolutions in France by Fishwomen ; and battles in Flanders, against the Emperor, who I thought was fighting against the Turks.

But even this was not the most distressing–for one day meeting a friend, I inquired very cordially after his wife, who I found a few days afterwards, had eloped just before with another gentleman ; and meeting with a lady, I inquired kindly for her sister, who I found had departed to the other world a fortnight before.

On this account I never will stir again “out of the world” unless your paper goes along with me. I hold a newspaper to be a kind of viaticum with which every man should be provided, and which become the more necessary the further we remove from town It. is the only way to keep pace with what is going on every day in the fashionable or literary world–and to prevent talking about dead friends, or wives that have absconded.

In short, Sir, a newspaper is my creed–and never will I again travel without my faith along with me : having fully experienced the unpleasantness of being sent back into the world as ignorant as if I had been born again–I hereby give notice–” That if an hottentot friend of mine invites me, who does not take in your paper or some other–I will not visit him.” DICK DESPERATE.

–Glasgow Advertiser, 14 December 1789

Who Caused the America Revolution? A 1789 Appraisal

The following analysis of the causes of the American, and indeed French, Revolution, appeared in the Glasgow Advertiser in November 1789. It is surprisingly similar to how the revolution was taught by my own secondary school history teacher.

“What mighty contests rise from trivial things;”
That the present Revolution in France is a consequence of the Revolution in America, cannot admit of a doubt. The American Revolution originated in Adams, a very insignificant Bostonian. Not that this Adams had the least expectation of American independence, when he fomented the opposition to the stamp-act; indeed no human wisdom could possibly have foreseen the subsequent folly and imprudence of the British administration and its obsequious Parliament. An Administration so totally destitute of commonsense, so totally ignorant of every principle of sound policy, no nation ever beheld. Adams had the sagacity to avail himself of such despicable policies.—Fortunately for the American cause,the Generals that were sent from England were of congenial abilities with the Minister, and the Americans themselves were surprised at the facility with which they acquired their independence.—Yet all the blunders of the British administration, and the miserable conduct of the British Generals, would hardly have been sufficient to emancipate America, notwithstanding her extreme weakness, without the assistance of France; and this assistance depended entirely on Dr.Franklin being driven to Paris by the fatal-philippic of a certain great lawyer. Such, therefore, is the chain of concurrent circumstances that hath overturned the French monarch. If the British minister had possessed common sagacity—if he could have distinguished a general from a corporal; if Franklin had been treated with common civility, America would have remained a British colony, and France an absolute monarch, for ages yet to come.

Clumsy in their Shape, Awkward in their Carriage

CAPE OF GOOD HOPE.

The following account of the inhabitants of this settlement is given by a late traveller.

The education of youth has hitherto been very much neglected: the government never hit upon any successful plan for the establishment of public schools; and the individual had no other ambition but that of qualifying his sons, by writing and accounts, to become servants of the Company. This body of merchants had a number of persons in their employ, who were very ill paid. Their salaries, indeed, were sufficient to afford them a bare subsistence ; but it tacitly allowed them to negotiate for themselves: the consequence of such a conduct was, that each became a kind of petty dealer. Each had his little private shop in some corner of his house. The most pal try articles were in the list of their commodities for sale ; and those who ranked high in government, and assumed a string of full-founding epithets to their names, felt no sore of indignity in retailing the produce of their gardens ; not indeed, avowedly, but through the medium of their slaves. In fact, the minds of every class, the Governor, the Clergy, the F[????]l, and the Secretary of the Court of Justice excepted, were wholly bent on trade. Knopman, or merchant, was a title that conferred rank at the Cape, to which the military even aspired. On this subject the ideas of the Dutch differ widely from those of the Chinese, who have degraded the merchant into the very lowest order of their society.

That portion of the day, not employed in the concerns of trade, is usually devoted to the gratification of the sensual appetite. Few have any taste for reading, and none for the cultivation of the fine arts.–They have no kind of public amusements, except occasional balls ; nor is there much social intercourse but by family parties; which usually consist of card playing or dancing. Money-matters and merchandize engross their whole conversation : yet none are opulent, though many in easy circumstances. There are no beggars in the whole colony, and but a few who are objects of public charity. The subsistence for these is derived from the interest of a fund established out of the church superfluities, from alms, donations, and collections, made after divine service, and not from any tax laid upon the public. Except, indeed, a few colonial assessments for the repairs of the streets and public works, the inhabitants of the Cape have little drawback on their profits, on the produce of their labour.

It has been the remark of most travellers, that the ladies of the Cape are pretty, lively, and good humoured ; possessing little of that phlegmatic tem per which is a principal trait in the national character of the Dutch. The difference in the manners and appearance of the young men and the young women, in the same family, is inconceivably great. The former are clumsy in their shape, awkward in in their carriage, and of an unsocial disposition; whilst the latter are generally of a small, delicate form, below the middle size, of easy and unaffected manners, well dressed, and fond of social intercourse; an indulgence in which they are seldom restrained by their parents, and which they as seldom turn to abuse. They are here indeed less dependent on, and less subject to, the caprice of parents than else where. Primogeniture entitles to no advantage; but all the children, male and female, share alike in the family property. No parent can disinherit a child without assigning, on proof, on at least of the fourteen reasons enumerated in the Justinian Code.

By the law of the colony, a community of all property, both real and personal, is supposed to take place on the marriage of two person unless the contrary should be particularly provided against by solemn contract made before marriage. Where no such contract exists, the children, on the death of either parent, are entitled to that half of the joint property, which was supposed to belong to the deceased, and which cannot be withheld on application after they are come of age.

It is but justice to the young females of the Cape to remark, that many of them have profited much more than could be expected from the limited means of education that the place affords. In the better families, most of them are taught music, and some have acquired a tolerable degree of execution. Many understand the French language, and some have made great proficiency in the English. They are expert at the needle, and all kinds of lace, knot ting, and tambour work, and in general make up their own dresses, following the prevailing fashion of England brought from time to time by the female passengers bound to India, from whom they may be said to

“Catch the manners living as they rise”

Neither are the other sex, while boys, deficient in vivacity or talent ; but, for want of the means of a proper education, to open their minds, and excite in them a desire of knowledge, they soon degenerate into the common routine of eating, smoaking [sic], and sleeping. Few of the male inhabitants associate with the English, except such as hold employments under the Government. This backwardness may be said to be owing in part to the different habits of the two nations, and partly, perhaps, to the reluctance that a vanquished people must always feel in mixing with their conquerors.

The Glasgow Advertiser, 23 April 1792

Bills of Exchange; or, A Bride Worth Paying for

A humorous Adventure of a Marriage negotiated by a Bill of Exchange, in one of the English West India Islands. A Merchant, originally from London, having acquired a great fortune in this island, concluded with himself he could not be happy in the enjoyment of it, unless he shared it with a woman of merit ; and knowing none to his fancy, he resolved to write to a worthy correspondent of his in London. He knew no other [????] than that he used in his trade ; therefore treating affairs of love as he did his business, after giving his friend in a letter several commissions, and re serving this for the last, he went on thus: “Item, seeing that I have taken a resolution to marry, and that I do not find a suitable match for me here, do not fail to send by next ship, bound hither, a young woman of the qualifications and form following: As for a portion I demand none; let her be of an honest family; between 20 and 25 years of age ; of a middle stature, and well pro portioned ; her face agreeable, her temper mild, her character blameless, her health good, and her constitution strong enough to bear the change of the climate, that these may be no occasion to look out for a second through lack of the first, soon after she comes to hand ; which must be provided against as much as possible, considering the great distance and the dangers of the sea. If she arrives, and conditioned as abovesaid, with the present letter endorsed by you, or, at least, an at tested copy thereof, that there may be no mistake or imposition, I hereby oblige and engage myself to satisfy the said letter, by marrying the bearer at 15 days sight. In witness whereof I [????] this, &c.”

The London correspondent read over and over the odd article, which put the future spouse on the same footing with the bales of goods he was to send to his friend ; and after admiring the prudent exactness of the naturalised Creole, and his laconic stile, in enumerating the qualifications which he insisted on,he endeavoured to serve him to his mind; and after many enquiries, he judged he had found a lady fit for his purpose, in a young person of a reputable family, but no fortune ; of good humour, and of a polite education ; well shaped, and more than tolerably handsome. HE made the proposal to her as his friend had directed, and the young gentlewoman, who had no subsistence but from a cross old aunt, who gave her a great deal of uneasiness, accepted it. A ship bound for the West Indies was then fitting out at Bristol; the gentlewoman went on board the same, together with the bale of goods, being well provided with all necessaries, and particularly with a certificate in due form, and indorsed by the correspondent. She was also included in the invoice, the last article of which ran thus: “Item, a maid of 21 years of age, of the quality, shape, and condition as per order; as appears by the affidavits and certificates she has to produce.” Writings, which were thought necessary to so exact a man as the future husband, were an extract from the parish register ; a certificate of her character, signified by the curate ; an attestation of her neighbours, setting forth that she had for the space of three years lived with an old aunt who was intolerably peevish, and that she had not, during all that time, given her said aunt the least occasion of complaint. And lastly, the goodness of her constitution was certified, after consideration by *line unreadable* departure, the London correspondent sent several letters to advise by other ships to his friend, whereby he informed him, that per such a ship he sent him a young woman of such an age, character, and condition, &c. in a word, such what desired to marry. The letters of advice, the bales, and the gentlewoman, came safe to the port ; and our Creole, who happened to be one of the foremost on the pier at the lady’s landing, was charmed to see a handsome person, who having heard him called by his name, told him, “Sir, I have a bill of exchange upon you, and you know that it is not usual for people to carry a great deal of money about them in such a long voyage as I have made ; I beg the favour you will be pleased to pay it.” At the same time she gave him his correspondent’s letter, on the back of which was wrote, “The bearer of this is the spouse you ordered me to send you.” Ha, madam ! said the Creole, I never yet suffered my bills to be protested, and I swear this shall not be the first : I shall reckon myself the most fortunate of all men, if you allow me to discharge it.” Yes, Sir, replied she, and the more willingly, since I am apprized of your character. We have several persons of honour on board, who knew you very well, and who, during my passage; have answered all the question I asked of them concerning you, in so advantageous a manner, that it has raised in me a perfect esteem for you.”

This first interview was in a few days after followed by the nuptials, which were very magnificent. The new married couple are satisfied with their happy union made by a bill of exchange, which was the most fortunate that had happened in that island for many years.

The Glasgow Advertiser, 17 September 1790

A Curious Way to Start a War or Bring Down a Government

ADVERTISEMENTS.

WANTED-A good clever argument to prove the approach for a WAR between this country and another.–Whoever inclines to undertake the job will receive a Spanish fleet of four ships to begin with.

N. B. No objection to a war with any country.

Apply at the Stock Exchange between ten and two.

WANTED–A division in the Cabinet for some cause or other. No objection to the Journey to Hanover, the Dissolution of Parliament, or any other.

N. B. Nothing under undoubted authority will be admitted.

—The Glasgow Advertiser, 19 April 1790.

Who would have guessed the fountain of youth was in Pennsylvania?

Longevity.–At Taconey, a small village about seven miles from Philadelphia, there is now living a shoemaker of the name of Robert Glen, who in December last attained the great age of one hundred and fourteen years. Scotland was the place of his nativity; he remembers having seen King William III. and was present at the two succeeding coronations. Neither his memory nor his sight, are in the least impaired; and such is his strength, that after working all the week at his profession, he regularly walks on Sunday to Philadelphia [10 miles], and back. His third wife is now living, and is not more than thirty years old.

The Glasgow Advertiser, 23 April 1792

A Very Un-Gentlemanly Advertisement

The following appeared in the Glasgow Advertiser in March 1814. Its veracity has not, I’m afraid, been verified.

INFAMOUS ADVERTISEMENT.

(From the Examiner of February 20.)

A Lady, with a zeal for decorum be coming her sex and country, has sent us the following extract from a Daily Paper. It requires no comment; and its publication, we trust, will prevent the necessity of any comment in future: Copy of an Advertisement which appeared in the Morning Advertiser of Tuesday, Feb. 15, 1814:”Wanted, a handsome young Mistress, who will be well taken care of. Address, with all particulars, to A. B., Two penny PostOffice, to be called for. Wardour-street, Soho-square.”

(From the Examiner of Feb. 27th.)

Mr. EXAMINER. I should esteem it a great favour, if you would have the goodness to allow me, through the medium of the Examiner, to rub off the stain which the Advertisement for a Handsome Young Mistress, noticed in the Examiner of last Sunday, is calculated to fix on me .A person came into my shop, having the appearance of a Gentleman, saying he was about to put an Advertisement into the papers, and requested permission to have applications (by letter) addressed there, for A. B; his request was readily granted. I suppose he wanted a cook, or a coachman, or that a dog or a pocket book had been lost or found; nor had I the remotest idea of the nature of the Advertisement, till after it had been inserted, read, and its author execrated, by some thousands of people in town and country.

As a man in business, having some pretensions to respectability as a father of a young family, and as a member of society, I conceived it my indispensible duty, not only to clear myself, but to find out the name and residence of the offender, and hold him up to the light. The public will be somewhat surprised to find, that this personage is called the Honourable Mr. Murray; he lives at 29, Great Titchfield-street. I hope this discovery and exposure will induce the gentleman to aim at something more becoming his title, in future, than violating public morals, or abusing the common offices of civility.

I have the honour to be, most respectfully, Sir, your very humble servant,

THOMAS DOLBY.

Two-Penny Post Office, Wardour-street, Feb. 14, 1814.

The present occupant of 29 Great Titchfield-street is Moray House. I wonder if they are aware of their address’s disreputable past.

Love is a Battlefield; or, Not your Typical Camp Follower

The following appeared in the Glasgow Advertiser in March 1814. Its veracity has not, I’m afraid, been verified.

INFAMOUS ADVERTISEMENT.

(From the Examiner of February 20.)

A Lady, with a zeal for decorum be coming her sex and country, has sent us the following extract from a Daily Paper. It requires no comment; and its publication, we trust, will prevent the necessity of any comment in future: Copy of an Advertisement which appeared in the Morning Advertiser of Tuesday, Feb. 15, 1814:”Wanted, a handsome young Mistress, who will be well taken care of. Address, with all particulars, to A. B., Two penny PostOffice, to be called for. Wardour-street, Soho-square.”

(From the Examiner of Feb. 27th.)

Mr. EXAMINER. I should esteem it a great favour, if you would have the goodness to allow me, through the medium of the Examiner, to rub off the stain which the Advertisement for a Handsome Young Mistress, noticed in the Examiner of last Sunday, is calculated to fix on me .A person came into my shop, having the appearance of a Gentleman, saying he was about to put an Advertisement into the papers, and requested permission to have applications (by letter) addressed there, for A. B; his request was readily granted. I suppose he wanted a cook, or a coachman, or that a dog or a pocket book had been lost or found; nor had I the remotest idea of the nature of the Advertisement, till after it had been inserted, read, and its author execrated, by some thousands of people in town and country.

As a man in business, having some pretensions to respectability as a father of a young family, and as a member of society, I conceived it my indispensible duty, not only to clear myself, but to find out the name and residence of the offender, and hold him up to the light. The public will be somewhat surprised to find, that this personage is called the Honourable Mr. Murray; he lives at 29, Great Titchfield-street. I hope this discovery and exposure will induce the gentleman to aim at something more becoming his title, in future, than violating public morals, or abusing the common offices of civility.

I have the honour to be, most respectfully, Sir, your very humble servant,

THOMAS DOLBY.

Two-Penny Post Office, Wardour-street, Feb. 14, 1814.

The present occupant of 29 Great Titchfield-street is Moray House. I wonder if they are aware of their address’s disreputable past.