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pretenders, who, under the specious mask of giving “advice gratis," are enabled to thrust down the public throat all manner of abominable nostrums, prepared with no other view than the unprincipled one of their own emolument. Hence we have, on the one hand, the self-dubbed Doctor Crossbones, inviting all London to come for his gratuitous advice, and prescribing to the multitude for every imaginable disease that flesh is heir to, his one infallible specific, contained in a square green bottle, "price four and sixpence;" and on the other hand we have the self-dubbed Doctor Sarcophagus Pillcloud,
"Who, with one little wonderful pill,
Can every disorder keep under,"
at least according to his own account-who makes his hogsheads of wonderful pills by steam machinery, and rains them in a deluge of boxes at one and three-halfpence"treble boxes two and nine,”—upon all who apply to him or to his ubiquitous agents for "advice gratis."
Such unprincipled abuses are among the crying scandals of our day. They are abounding in every quarter-the followers, rivals, and imitators of the Messrs. Crossbones and Pillcloud infesting every populous district, and being always most successful, which means most mischievous and most murderous, where the population is most dense and least educated. Let us warn our readers to act with judgment in matters affecting their health, and remind them that, inasmuch as no man in his senses would think of intrusting a watch needing repairs into the hands of a scavenger, he ought not to think of intrusting his bodily frame-which is a machine infinitely more complex than a watch—to the mercies of an ignoramus who knows nothing of its mechanism.
TWENTY-FOUR HOURS OF LONDON STREETS.
WE are standing at the central point of one of the bridges which span the Thames, when the first indication of the coming dawn of a midsummer morning appears in the clear and starry arch above our heads. There is a long feathery ridge of light clouds in the north-eastern horizon; beneath which a pale clear streak of reddish white shows where the day will break, while above them a cool white light shoots and flutters up towards the zenith. The stars grow pale and twinkle feebly in that spreading light, and at length die out and disappear. Now the light rises higher and higher, and its broad image is reflected in the river below; the dusky bosom of Father Thames puts on a light grey mantle, and the red, glimmering pendants of reflected fire-light, which hung like jewels on his vest, die out in their turn as the stars died out above. The slow day-dawn creeps onwards and upwards in beautiful gradations; and every pulse of morn, as she throbs into being, reveals to us afresh the old and well-known shapes, and transforms once more into familiar things the grotesque and shadowy images which the gloom of night invests with mystery and awe. First against that broad and quivering curtain, which seems to vibrate fitfully above the couch of the awakening day, rises, like a vision of supernatural strength and majesty, the magnificent outline of St. Paul's Cathedral, which now, in the absence of positive light, shows like a monster profile, black and flat, its
edges sharply defined upon the shimmering background. Then the towers and spires and projecting columns of a thousand churches and factories come gradually into view; as though, in answer to some magical summons, they now for the first time stepped forth into being, charged with the mission to "stand and wait," in the dim chambers of obscurity, around that one lofty and shadowy potentate. But the day is rushing onwards, and now his herald, twilight, comes tripping over that low-lying line of clouds-the red, glittering lamps on the bridges fade into viewless sparks at his approach, and after a few ineffectual blinks are no more visible. He enwraps the whole scene in a wondrous shadowless semi-radiance, soft, soothing, and transparent, in which all things appear in startling clearness and nearness, and in which the minutest features of objects which lie beyond our ken in the full glare of day are distinctly discerned. This marvellous effect of the morning twilight, which few take the trouble to witness, endures but for a few moments: it is over already; the rays of the risen sun now flash warmly upon the gilded cross of the cathedral, and, gradually stealing down upon the dome, crown the noble pile with a halo of glory.
As we look around upon the river, we become aware, for the first time, that old Father Thames is uttering his voices, which, drowned all day long in the roar and din of the traffic carried on upon his waters, are now, in this still hour of sunrise, distinctly audible. We hear the floods, as the morning breeze blows freshly against the turning tide, clapping their hands we hear, too, the hoarse swirl of the surge against the piers of the bridge, the moored barges, and the floating gangways, and the rafts of timber alongside the wharves. There is no sign of life upon the broad bosom of the stream, save a navigator's cat stalking stealthily along the edge of a coal-barge; and no voice of living thing breaks the solemn and touching silence, amid which the dawning
day looks down upon the metropolis of the world, fast bound in the bands of slumber.
"Earth has not anything to show more fair:
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill;
Yes, the mighty heart of London is lying still; the hearts of her mightiest and meanest partake of a common rest. With one half the London world, the day is far spent before the other half is awake to its duties and its pleasures. While the rich and prosperous court repose on beds of down, houseless poverty sleeps at ease, during the warm summer nights, in any sheltering nook, dry arch, or covered door-way, where, lapped in golden dreams, the penniless being may, for aught we know, be far happier in his sleep than the fat millionaire, who is too wide-awake to sleep soundly at all. If we had but a true knowledge of the theory of compensations, we might chance to find that the poor man's sleep is worth all my lord's waking hours, and that the difference between the fortunes of the two, all things considered, is not so great as we imagine. This reflection comes in our way, and we can hardly escape recording it, because the very first human subject that presents himself for consideration on a summer's morning in London, to any early bird who happens to be astir in time to catch such an unfortunate worm, is that social phenomenon, the houseless, homeless vagrant. Sum
mer is the time of carnival, during which these gentry pay no rent. We have passed two this morning on the bridge, curled up on the seat, on the leeward side of the parapet, and snoring audibly to the response of the river below; and as we leave the bridge, and pursue our way northward to the City, we see one or two more fast locked in slumber, in here and there an out-of-the-way recess, whose infringement of the law the policeman, if he sees them at all, compassionately ignores, leaving them to recruit exhausted nature by a few brief hours of rest. But the time of awakening is close at hand; the wretchedness that snores upon the flint" must
start from the comfortless lair at the first summons of authority, and forth again upon its weary pilgrimage.
First pioneer of the daily traffic in the ever-trafficking world of London, on this fair summer morning, as indeed, on every morning of the year,-is the "salopian," whom we encounter not far from the foot of the bridge. Lest any of our provincial readers, or lie-abed fellow-citizens should be ignorant of the physiology, or even of the existence, of this hospitable worthy, we will pause for a moment to recount his derivation and witness his deeds. Like many a knight who has never mounted war-steed or drawn a sword, he bears a name which no longer expresses his calling. In times comparatively ancient, when tea was ten shillings a pound, and coffee proportionately dear, the very poor were debarred from their use; but knowing the virtues of a hot beverage, they sought and found a substitute in a decoction of sassafras wood, which, sweetened with sugar and softened with milk, was very largely consumed and much relished by those accustomed to its flavour. This liquid, for what reason we do not know, but probably from some whimsical allusion to the slopping sound emitted by those who imbibed it standing in the street, obtained the designation of "saloop," and the sellers of it became salopians, a title which they still retain, though they no longer dispense the beverage which originated