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Title: The Scribbler 1822-05-25 Volume 1, Issue 48s

Date of first publication: 1822

Author: Samuel Hull Wilcocke 1766-1833 (Editor)

Date first posted: Mar. 14, 2021

Date last updated: Mar. 14, 2021

Faded Page eBook #20210333

This eBook was produced by: Marcia Brooks, Cindy Beyer & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at https://www.pgdpcanada.net


Montreal. Saturday, 25th, 1822.



Fiat justicia, ruat cœlum.—Do justice and be damn’d.


Felices ter et amplius,

Quos irrupta tenet copula.



Thrice happy are the chosen few, whose joys,

In wedlock center, and whose love ne’er cloys.


——Sive lapis, sive es deterfus in agro

Stipes ab antiquis tu quoque nomen habes.



Whether a foundling thou of field, or town,

To thee an ancient name is handed down.


In the course of my morning reading, as a late learned law lord used to say, I have met with a sketch of the character of a judge, which I think may not be uninstructive or uninteresting to my readers, and which I have curtailed in order to suit the space I can devote to it.

Eubulus is a judge in one of the courts of law. Eubulus believes himself a very honest judge, and it is but doing him justice to allow that he would not for any consideration, knowingly, give an unjust decision; yet Eubulus hardly ever gave a fair judgement in any cause where he was connected with, or knew any thing about, the parties. If either of them happened to be his friend or relation, or connected with his friends or relations, Eubulus is always sure to see the cause in a light favourable to his friend’s connections. If on the other hand one of the parties happens to be a person to whom Eubulus has a dislike, or who is disliked by, or opposed in interest or in any thing to, his friends and relations, that party is sure to lose his suit. In the one case he sits down to examine the cause under all the influence and partiality of friendship; his cool senses are run away with; his judgement is blinded, and he sees nothing but the argument on the side of his friend, or of his friend’s friend, and overlooks every thing stated against him. In the other he acts under the impression of dislike, or by the bias which the wishes or interests of his friends have created in his mind; and his judgement is rendered accordingly. A cause was lately brought before Eubulus in which every feeling of humanity & compassion prompted the wish that one of the parties might be successful, but the right was clearly on the other side. Eubulus sat down to examine it with all the tender feelings full in his mind; they guided his judgement and he determined contrary to justice. In another case a gross injury having been sustained by a party, who was extremely obnoxious to some of the intimate friends and near relations of Eubulus, when, by a flaw in the proceedings, the large security obtained by that party for recovery of her damages, (it was an injured female) became liable to be invalidated, Eubulus immediately saw that by having been compelled to give heavy bail, the aggressor had been very greatly inconvenienced, and ordered the security to be entirely set aside in consequence of that flaw, whilst he was totally blind to what flashed conviction upon every one else, that thereby the injured lady was wholly precluded from redress. During all this, Eubulus believes himself honest and in one sense of the word he is so; he does not knowingly or deliberately allow himself to give a dishonest decision; but in the higher and more extensive sense of the word he is a dishonest judge. He suffers himself to be imposed on by the feelings of friendship and of humanity; to be blinded by the partiality of attachment, or the imposing nature of influence, rank and character. Nay, far from guarding against it, he aids the imposition, and increases his blindness; and, becoming the willing dupe of his own inclinations, commits unrighteousness with a good intent.

I have for some time promised a place to the following letter to which I wish to draw attention, not as treating the subject of the preference due to a married life over a single one, with that extent and that warmth which it merits, but as an ébauché, a sketch for a future pen to fill up the outlines, trace the characters, and give the colouring.

L. L. Macculloh, Esq.

A novel doctrine has lately become quite prevalent in this country, that celibacy is preferable to wedlock, and that a bachelor has a better chance of happiness in this world than a married man. Permit me to offer, through the medium of your much read Scribbler, a few remarks on the subject. That there are and have been bachelors happy men, I am not disposed to deny, nor will I deny that there are married persons in the world that live unhappily, but I would ask, is this the case in general? I believe that the answer will be no; at least that would be mine.—Is the bachelor in possession of the many sources of happiness which the married man has? The latter has an affectionate friend allied to him by the closest ties of nature; a friend, in whose fidelity he can place implicit confidence, who has no interest that is foreign to his, no wish but for their mutual felicity. If he has children, what a source of happiness do they not produce? framing their youthful minds to liberal and virtuous principles, and looking forward with the sanguine hopes of a parent, to the time when they may become useful and valuable members of society. How different in general is the case with the bachelor, contracted in his views, selfish, and capricious, he has no pleasure in any thing that is not immediately connected with the sordid feeling of self. He knows not, he feels not, he cannot feel, the exquisite sensations of a husband and a father. Shut up, as it were, within himself, his views expand not, and he has no abstract idea of happiness, no conception of it, but as tending to his own gratification. After having passed the greater part of his life, distrusting his fellow creatures, and adding every year to his unfavourable opinion of mankind; he seems to ask the author of his being in the tone of impiety, “for what purpose didst thou create me?”

In the hope that an abler pen than mine will advocate a cause dearer to me than life, I am, Sir,

A friend to Matrimony.

As my poetic contributors have likewise, and probably justly, complained of the delay they experience in the appearance of their effusions, I now select, from those of my ingenious Port Talbot friend, his lines

    To Laura.

Now my muse is on the wing,

Wilt thou listen while I sing,

Any little, foolish thing?


Since for trifles I but live,

Trifles only I can give;

Such must Laura then receive.


Childhood was thy happy day,

Sportive, harmless, noisy, gay,

Getting toys soon thrown away.


Tears were then like April showers,

Smiles, the sweetest vernal flowers,

Springing wild in sylvan bowers.


But the flitting April day,

Changeful, various, sprightly, gay,

Quickly rolls itself away.


Thus thy life’s eventful dawn,

Childhood, presently is gone,

Blooming youth comes blushing on.


Youth is like the morn of May,

Lovely, beautiful and gay,

Sanguine as meridian ray.


Timid as the violet blue,

Just the greensward peeping thro’,

Fragrant as the honey-dew;


Spotless as the virgin-snow,

Sweet as rose of morning-blow,

True to friendship, sacred glow.


Then does love delight to dart

His bright arrows thro’ the heart—

O, the pleasing—teasing, smart!


When the dawn of love appears,

Then awake a thousand fears,

Hopes, anxieties, and tears.


Blissful passion! baneful too!

Fickle, false, delusive—true—

Pain to many—joy to few.


While it kindles soft alarms,

Virtue gives it countless charms,

Tempting to a lover’s arms.


Prudence guides its glowing fire,

Modulates its warm desire,

Checks it, bids it to retire.


Prudence, ah! too oft I fear,

Found to linger in the rear,

Can not make the passions hear.


But how blest the happy day

When a youth deserving, may

Lead the blooming maid away.


Hopes and fears, internal strife,

Yield their empire to the wife,

Bound by love, and bound for life.


Maid farewell! may prudence guide,

Virtue keep thee by her side,

’Till the grave its victim hide.


Peculiar circumstances alone, which now no longer exist, prevented the earlier insertion of the first of Bion Grapheus’s biographical sketches. I hope to receive soon from him the memoirs he is about arranging of the Loverules, Oldjosephs, &c.

L. L. M.

Mr. Scribbler,

The common complaint among your greedy readers is the want of biographical sketches;—something about the big-wigs—by what title they powder their heads; and how they came by such airs of superiority and consequential habits. I have often taken up my pen to enlighten the world on these subjects and to perpetuate their fame to future generations; but I have as often felt my inadequacy to penetrate the mists and obscurities in which many of our distinguished men are enveloped. I have no doubt that others have been deterred by similar difficulties, particularly as our friend Jack told me the other day, that he had been toiling six weeks over the genealogy of the Hon. Tory Loverule, and that he had but just found out who his father was. I commended his enterprise and descanted a full hour upon the benefit he would confer on mankind by exhibiting as examples of worth or of detestation the characters of illustrious individuals. In attempting to stimulate Jack, I convinced myself of the importance of this duty, and while you will perform yours by giving publicity to my laborious researches, I shall not fail in the discharge of mine. A distinguished writer says:

“Those men whose vices and crimes have rendered them too celebrated in the annals of time, have a claim to the notice of the biographer; and though to pass over the foibles as well as the enormities of his fellow creatures, might be a pleasing omission, yet the sacred character of truth requires that the irregular passions of men should be curbed, by observing the fatal effects and the everlasting disgrace which misapplied talents have produced, and the many calamities which the indulgence of criminal desires in public life, as well as in domestic society, has always entailed on the world.—To be useful we must paint impartially the conduct of individuals, whether laudable or reprehensible; and those who have caused the miseries of their fellow-men are to be held up to public notice, and to public detestation, that in their history, if we cannot find consolation, we may at least discover those striking lessons of instruction and of precaution, which experience never fails to afford to the sober and contemplative mind.”

I begin with Jarret the 1st, surnamed Limberjoints. He was born, 1776, in one of those low ranges of wooden buildings which grace the walk of Derbyshire-lane. His grandfather was educated at the sign of the shoe-brush in Queens-alley, and, after taking the requisite degrees, he opened a shop near the since celebrated Cato-street, in a house which was knocked down a few years since, by the rude assault of a truckman’s carriage. He was the original proprietor of the present Day and Martin’s Japan blacking, which, in those times, bore the name of Jarret’s fluid liquorice. It obtained some celebrity for the inventor, and was even used and recommended by the King’s household; but what most contributed to the distinction of old Jarret was a lawsuit he instituted against one Tom Stebbins for vending a deleterious composition under the title of Jarret’s fluid liquorice. The imposture was sufficiently proved, and a pair of boots were presented by the plaintiff, to satisfy the Court that Stebbins’s blacking contained a large proportion of oil of vitriol. The counsel for the defendant, however, contended that Jarret’s liquorice was not patented, and might therefore be imitated; and, after a long argument, the jury were charged to find accordingly. This case being considered a question of law, was ordered to be printed in the next quarterly report, and it is from this document (Vide Law-reports, 1745 c. 10 p. 175) that I have derived much of my information respecting the grand-father of Jarret the 1st, and of Day and Martin’s Japan blacking.[1]

An old woman who sells excellent spruce-beer by the mug in the main street of St. Lawrence Suburbs, has given me a very minute account of Limberjoints’ more immediate parentage being the particular friend of his father; I will have it ready for a following number.


[1] This blacking continued to be imitated long after old Jarret’s death, much to the advantage of London shoemakers. Its reputation in consequence began to decline, and when Day and Martin purchased the secret, they changed its name and obtained a Royal patent.

To Correspondents.

Norval’s favour is received; it has partly been anticipated in my first reply to Mores, in No. 46: purposing to continue the vindication of my writings from the malevolent attacks made upon them under the garb of sanctified austerity, I feel much satisfaction in the aid afforded me by Norval, and will avail of his sentiments and expressions when I again take the subject up. A second Sappho cannot expect to rival the first, from whom I am disappointed in not having again heard. From Sorel I have a number of hints, and hope my forces will soon be recruited so that I may embody and discipline the whole, and march to the attack of that place. Tom Brown is particularly requested to favour me with a direction to which I can address a confidential letter: so also my valued correspondent Bion Grapheus. In general I beg to inform my correspondents, that all communications will be regularly received and attended to if directed as usual to L. L. Macculloh, Esq. Post Office, Montreal, or at the present Scribbler-Office, No. 26, St. Laurent Street, two doors above Mr. Gundlack’s; but they are cautioned against leaving any letters with Mr. Lane, or at any place other than as mentioned above, for fear of treachery and interception.


Misspelled words and printer errors have been corrected. Where multiple spellings occur, majority use has been employed.

Punctuation has been maintained except where obvious printer errors occur.


[The end of The Scribbler 1822-05-25 Volume 1, Issue 48s edited by Samuel Hull Wilcocke]