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This great novelist was born at Landport, Portsmouth, on the 15th of February, 1812. His father was at this time employed as clerk in the Navy Pay Office. Subsequently he was employed in the gallery of the House of Commons to report the debates for the Morning Chronicle newspaper. So soon as his education was concluded, he was articled to an attorney. But drawing writs and serving processes did not accord with his desires. He determined to be a reporter, and set himself to learn shorthand.
He soon was engaged as reporter upon the Morning Chronicle, and became celebrated for the “ clearness, vigour, and extreme exactness" of his reports.
But he had thoughts of his own which he fancied would be welcomed by a discerning public. Some sketches and tales he had written, he dropped stealthily one evening, at twilight, with fear and trembling, into a dark letter-box, in a dark office, up a dark court in Fleet Street, which appeared in the next number of the magazine.
6 How well I recollect it!” he afterwards wrote, “I walked down to Westminster Hall, and turned into it for half an hour, because my eyes were 80 dimmed with joy and pride
that they could not bear the street, and were not fit to be seen there."
Besides the literary reputation his numerous works have achieved for him, he has also won laurels as a publio speaker and reader. In fact, he has a triple character author, actor, and orator. As the last, he is far above mediocrity.
That Dickens has genius, and genius of an extraordinary kind, no one can for a moment doubt; but without industry, without persever.ince, his genius would have been undeveloped. The thoughts might have been in his brain, but we should neitier have derived amusement nor instruction from them. Lung may he be spared to delight us with the fruits of his imagination, and to instruct and bless us with his wisdom and sympathy.
ANECDOTES IN THE LIFE OP
J. B. GOUGH.
One of the most remarkable men now living is J. B. Gough. He has earned an extensive reputation by his eloquence, his talents, and his succossful advocacy of the temperance reformation. His reputation is not confined to the United States of Americn. His fame having long since reached this country as the most powerful temperance advocate living, there has for some time existed a strong desire in England, to see and hear one who has so deeply impressed the public mind in that part of the world, and who has left wherever he visited, such lasting traces of good.
HIS BIRTH-PLACE. J. B. Gough is an Englishman by birth, having been born at Sandgate, in Kent.
HIS PARENTS. His father was a soldier, and took part in some of the great European battles during the former part of the present century. His mother was a gentle, kind-hearted woman; her heart was a fountain whence the pure waters of affection never ceased to flow. She loved her son with a most ardent affection, who loved her in return with an equally fervent feeling. It may easily be imagined that such a mother exerted a great influence on the future orator.
WILLIAM WILBERFORCE AND J. B. GOUGH. The great Anti-slavery advocate, William Wilberforce, resided during the summer months near Sandgate, for the benefit of his health. One day, young Gough's father took him to a prayermeeting, which was held at the lodgings of the great philanthropist. By some means or other, the lad attracted the particular attention of Wilberforce, was patted on the head by him, and received many kind wishes for his welfare. He presented the lad with a book, and wrote his name on the fly-leaf. This treasure was afterwards lost, but was never forgotten ; neither were the kind words of the venerable giver.
HIS KINDNESS TO HIS MOTHER. We have already seen that a strong love existed between young Gough and his mother. As another proof of it, we give the following in the orator's own words,
“During my father's absence in the wars, my mother's circumstances were very straitened, although, in addition to schoolkeeping, she worked industriously at making a kind of lace then very fashionable, and in the manufacture of which article she greatly excelled. On one occasion, when our necessities absolutely required extra exertion, she took her basket of work, and travelled eight and a half weary miles, to the town of Dover. Arrived there, foot-sore and heart-weary, she threaded the streets and lanes with her lace, seeking for customers, but not one did she find; and after reluctantly abandoning the pursuit, she once more turned her face towards her home-a home desolate indeed. Painful, bitterly painful, were my mother's reflections, as she drew near her door, and when she rested her dreadfully tired frame, she had nothing in the house with which to recruit her strength. During her absence, a gentleman sent for me to the library, and was so pleased with my reading, that he made me a present of five shilling; and Mr. Purday, in addition, gave me sixpence. O, how rich I was ! Never had i possessed so vast an amount of money before, and all imaginable modes of spending it flitted before my fancy. I went to play with some other boys until my mother's return from Dover; and soon afterwards, on entering our house, I found her sitting in her chair, bathed in tears. I asked her what was the matter, when she drew me close to her, and looking in my face, with a mournful expression which I shall never forget, informed me that all her weary journey had been fruitless-she had sold nothing ! 0, with what joy I drew the crown-piece and the sixpence from my pocket, and placed them in her hand; and with what delightful feelings we knelt down, whilst she poured out her heart in thankfulness to God, for the relief so seasonably provided. My mother gave me a halfpenny for myself, and I felt far happier then than I did when I received the shining silver crown-piece ; it was all my own, to do as I liked with-to keep or spend. What an inestimable privilege! I can, in all sincerity say that never have I received money since then, which has afforded me such solid satisfaction ; and some of my most pleasant reminiscences are circumstances connected with that boyish incident.”
of imitation ; and having rigged up a chair into something as much resembling a pulpit as possible, I would secure her services in the way of dressing up rag dolls, which•constituted my congregation, for whose special benefit I used to pour forth my mimic oratory, very much to my own amusement, if not to the edification of my dumb friends, who sat stiff and starched, perfect patterns of propriety. Then, as a diversion, I manufactured, from an old bottomless chair, a very respectable Punch and Judy box; and many a laugh have I raised among my young companions by my performances in this line. My puppets were of home manufacture, but they passed muster well enough, especially with the boys and girls, who had never been fortunate enough to have seen the genuine personification of these remarkable characters.”
HIS LEAVING HOME. When young Gough was about twelve years old his father made arrangements that his son should go to America with a family who were about to emigrate. This was the turningpoint of his history. After all the preparations were made, the time came for him to go. Then it was that his affectionate mother showed her intense love. After he had bid her the painful adieu and felt her last breathless embrace, he says " I had mounted the roof of the London night coach, and was quitting the village, when, on turning round to take a last look at it, I saw a crouching female form, by a low wall, near the bathing machines. My heart told me at once that it was my mother, who had taken advantage of half an hour's delay at the inn door, to proceed a little distance, in order to have one more glance at her departing child. I never felt I was loved so much, as I did from that time.”
GOUGH IN AMERICA. The lad was no sooner in the United States than he had to battle with the galling ills of life. No brother, no sister, no parent, to sympathize with him; he was soon reduced to such poverty as to be obliged to sell his pocket-knife, to pay the postage of a letter to his father. The letter with the postage so paid arrived in due course at England, and was as duly answered. The answer told young Gough that his mother and sister would soon be with him.
A HAPPY MEETING, “On Saturday afternoon, in August 1833," he says, “a small note was brought, which informed me that my mother and sister were on board the ship Prident, then lying in the stream. I immediately left my work, intending to go to them, and was on my way down Fulton-street, when the sole of my shoe got loose, and I stepped into the bindery of Burlock and Wilbur, where I had directed my relatives to call on their arrival, to get a knife to cut it off, when I learned that my mother had called at the store a short time before, and had left to go to Williamstreet. I turned into that thoroughfare, and saw a little woman rapidly walking, whom I recognised as her of whom I was in search. She looked every now and then at a slip of paper which she held in her hand, and frequently glanced from it to the fronts of the houses, as if to ascertain some particular number. Much as I desired to speak to her, I thought I would try whether she would recognize me or not; so I went behind her, passed on a. little way, then turned and met her, but she did not observe who I was. I again went behind her, and exclaimed “ Mother!" At the well-known sound she turned in a moment, and in an instant she had clasped me in her arms, and embraced me in a very maternal manner, heedless of the staring passers-by, who were very little used to have such public displays of affection got up for their amusement.”
THE MOTHER'S DEATH. In less than twelve months his mother was removed to the house appointed for all living. Gough says: “ About eight o'clock I returned home from work, and was going up the steps, whistling as I went, when my sister met me at the threshold, and seizing me by the hand, exclaimed,
John, mother's dead !' What I did, what I said, I cannot remember ; but they told me afterwards, I grasped my sister's. arm, laughed frantically in her face, and then for some minutes seemed stunned by the dreadful intelligence. As soon as they permitted me, I visited our garret, now a chamber of death; and there, on the floor, lay all that remained of her whom I
J. B. GOUGE AND HIS LITTLE SISTER.
He says—"I had a sister, two years younger than myself, of whom I thought a great deal. She was my chief playmate. I used frequently to personate a clergyman, being then very fond
loved so well, and who had been a friend when all others had forsaken me. There she lay, with her face tied up with a handkerchief:
“ By foreign hands her aged eyes were closed !
By foreign hands her decent limbs composed." Our readers may expect some other anecdotes of J. B. Gough in our next number.
6 As soon
went into a chapel to hear the subject of the discourse. I refused to enter à pew, but stood at the end of the aisle. The minister arose, opened the Bible, and fixing his eyes on me, announced as the basis of his exhortation, the following passage in Ecclesiastes: "Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth, and let thy heart cheer ee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart and in the sight of thine eyes, but know thou that for all these things, God will bring thee into judgment.”
as I heard these words, so solemn and applicable to my own case, I felt as if struck by a bolt from Heaven. Scarcely able to help falling upon the floor, I gladly crept into a pew, and, composing my mind as well as I was able, listened to the sermon which was preached. On that never to be forgotten day I was most graciously arrested in my mad career by the Lord Jesus Christ; and ever since that memorable hour, I have sought to please Him, who bought me by his most precious blood, and in the exercise of such sovereign love and mercy, brought me to the knowledge of himself.”
THE SABBATH ARREST. One Sabbath evening, I stood in å village preaching the Gospel under the open canopy of Heaven. At the close of the sermon a young man whom I had never seen before, came forward to propose that a permanent prayer-meeting should be commenced in that village. Pleased with his earnest zeal, I asked him how he was brought to give himself to the Saviour ? He replied, 'I was very wicked, and used to join other young men, like-minded with myself, in jaunts of pleasure on the Sabbath
JOHN HOWARD. The name of John Howard stands wherever the English language is spoken, for perfect benevolence. When the public instructor, speaking eitlier from the pulpit or through the press, desires to personify the purest sympathy for human suffering, that name at once occurs to him ; but it would be a great mistake to attach the idea of feminine soft-heartedness to efforts as vigorous, as deliberate, and as masculine, as ever characterised the movements of intellectual man. The life of Howard is sublime, simply because it presents physical weakness overcoming mountains, in the pursuit of an end recommended by duty: It is difficult to gather from all that remains to us of Howard's unparalleled career, that he was either susceptible by nature, or romantic from education and early habit. had never beguiled him, and fancy slumbered in his mind. Measure him by the vulgar standard, and all the elements of heroism are missing in his composition. Judge him in his peculiar light, and you may search the annals of heroism in vain for one more illustrious than he !
This celebrated philanthropist was the son of an upholsterer. He was born on the second of September 1726, and died on the twentieth of January 1790. His whole life was consecrated to deeds of benevolence. Ascertaining that the prisons of England were in a wretched condition, and the prisoners subject to very great sufferings, he resolved to devote his energies to the improvement of the former, and the alleviation of the latter. He therefore travelled through Great Britain and Ireland on his errand of mercy; he then left his native country and visited the abodes of misery and want in foreign lands. He travelled three times through France, four times through Germany, five times through Holland, twice through Italy, once through Spain and Portugal, and also through Denmark, Sweden, Russia, Poland, and partly through Turkey and Egypt.
In private he set an example of all the religious, moral, and domestic duties, which he regulated with the order of a system, inculcated with the solicitude
of a parent, and enforced with the authority of a master. Perhaps no man more thoroughly sacrificed personal ease and comfort for the good of suffering humanity than this great philanthropist. When under the very shadows of the Pyramids he would not even lose a few hours in visiting them, “because ' said he, 'while looking at them, I may otherwise prevent a sigh, or càuse one tear less to flow.' On his arrival in St. Petersburgh, the Empress sent to invite him to court, but his noble answer to the messenger was, 'I come to visit the prisons of captives and not the courts and palaces of kings.'
Ten years before his death, the great orator Burke said, when speaking of Howard—'He has visited all Europe, not to survey the sumptuousness of palaces, or the stateliness of temples ; not to make accurate measurements of the remains of ancient grandeur; not to form a scale of the curiosity of modern art; not to collect medals or to collate manuscripts, but to dive into the depths of dungeons, to plunge into the infection of hospitals, to survey the mansions of sorrow and pain, to take
day. Our parents aiways required us to attend some place of worship, at the usual times of service—but left us to choose for ourselves the church or chapel we might prefer. They at the same time insisted that, on the Sunday evening, we should repeat the texts of the sermons we had heard. This they demanded, as a proof that we had not neglected the house of God.
'So much sunk in iniquity, alas ! were we, that instead of being wrought upon, by their pious and affectionate solicitude, we systematically deceived them, and this was our usual course : We went to a place of worship a little before the sermon began, and having heard the text, set off to our pleasures, not waiting to hear more, and thus able to meet the questionings that awaited us, we managed to blind our parents' eyes. One Sabbath-day, howerei, baving eagerly made arrangements for an excursion, Í
guage and dimension of misery, depression, and contempt, to remember the forgotten, to attend to the neglected, to visit the forsaken, and to compare and collate the distresses of all men in all countries.' His plan is original, and it is as full of genius as of humanity. It is a voyage of discovery, a circumnavigation of charity; and alreadly the benefit of his labour is felt more or less in every country
Never before perhaps were human energies devoted to a more laudable purpose. He relinquished his own comfort, so that he might bestow it on others; he was often immured in prison that others might be set at liberty; he exposed himself to danger that he might free others from it ; he visited the gloomy cell that he might inspire a ray of hope and joy in the breasts of the wretched, and at last fell a victim to his own ardent love of humanity ;--for while visiting a young lady, who lay dangerously ill of an epidemic fever, in order to administer relief, he caught the distemper, which proved fatal. He died with perfect resignation, and with the same coniparative indif- | ference to secular considerations, that his body was buried, at his own request, in the garden of the villa of a Mr. Dauphiné, in Rirssia. He said he should there be equally near to heaven, as if brought back to England.'
When asked why he was so preserved from infection, he said, “Next to the free goodness and mercy of the Author of my being, temperance and convenience were my preservatives. Howard was an abstainer from intoxicating drinks, aud scarcely ever ate animal food. When absent from England £1,500 were raised to defray the expenses of erecting a monument to his honour. As soon as he heard of it, he wrote to a friend, saying, *I cannot bear the thought of being thus dragged out. It deranges and confounds my schemes--my exaltation is my fallmy misfortune. The project was accordingly abandoned. When lie died, his death was announced in the “ London Gazette,” a compliment which no private individual ever before received. Though a dissenter, a monument was erected to his memory in St. Paul's Cathedral, the inscription of which says, “That he trod an open but unfrequented path to immortality, in the ardent and unremitted exercise of Christian charity.'
THE AMERICAN SAILORS. A SAILOR (says the Report of the Branch Tract Society in Baltimore) being about to embark on a voyage, called on a gentleman to take leave of him, and was presented with nine tracts. Several months afterwards he returned, called immediately on his friend, and the first words he uttered were: • The books, the books! the best, books in the world !! When requested to give a statement of their effects on himself and the crew, he said—“There was on board a sailor who was a very profane man; he used to read old Newspapers and Almanacks, and the men praised him for reading so well. One day, I told him I had some books, and he promised to read them. I brought him the nine tracts, and he swore he would read them all, if they would lie still. He took one, and said, 'Here is the Swearer's Prayer, we will read that first.' He read, but he soon began to weep; the sailors made sport of his tears, but he became so affected as to be compelled to lay down the tract. lle became so alarmed for himself, that he would not go aloft for fear of falling, and having his many wicked prayers answered. He cried and prayed until he found peace in Jesus Christ. Then he could go aloft as well as ever, and read the rest of the books to the sailors. Every calm evening we went around him to hear him, and on that voyage four others were converted to God. lIe came to be the best man on board. When the lands got sick he would pray for them, and read my books to them so that you sce they are the best books in the world."
THE FLYING-FISH. Tous fish, which has been so frequently described by travellers, deserves a short description in Pictorial Pages. It frequently riscs out of the water, and procceds a little above its surface to the extent of about two hundred feet; and this it does by aid of its pectoral fins, which are sufficiently long to sustain the animal's weight. It is not able to alter its course while in the air, nor to rise a second time, without again wetting its fins. Pursued by the dorados and other voracious fishes, the defenseless flying-Ash is compelled to leave its own native element, and seek protection by flight. This it does by springing out of the