We understand that Colonel Sibthorp intends proposing an economical plan of church extension, that is to cost nothing to the public; for it suggests that churches should be built of Indian rubber, by which their extension would become a matter of the greatest facility.
It is rumoured that the deficiency in the revenue is to be made up by a tax on the incomes of literary men; and a per-centage on the profits of Martinuzzi will first be levied by way of experiment. Should it succeed, a duty will be laid on the produce of The Cloak and the Bonnet.
* * * * *
THE LATE PROMOTIONS.
The whole of the police force take one step forward, on account of the late very liberal brevet.
Sergeant Snooks, of the Royal Heavy Highlows, to be raised to the Light Wellingtons.
Policemen K 482,611, to be restored to the staff by having his staff restored to him, which had been taken from him for misconduct.
Corporal Smuggins, 16th Foot, to be Sergeant by purchase, vice Buggins, arrested for debt.
All the post captains, who were formerly Twopennies, will take the rank of Generals.
In the Thames Navy, 2d mate Simpkins, of the Bachelor, to be 1st mate, vice Phunker, fallen overboard and resigned.
All the men who are above the age of 100, and are in the actual discharge of duty as policemen, are to be immediately superannuated on half-pay—a liberal arrangement, prompted, it is believed, by the birth of the Prince of Wales.
* * * * *
NORMA, OSSIAN, AND PAUL BEDFORD.
A vestal virgin with a husband and two children, a Roman Lothario, with an Irish friend, a Druidical temple, a gong, and an auto-da-fe, mix up charmingly with Bellini’s quadrille-like music to form a pathetic opera; and sympathetic dilettanti weep over the woes of “Norma,” because they are so exquisitely portrayed by Miss Kemble, in spite of the subject and the music. Such, indeed, is the power of this lady’s genius—which is shed like a halo over the whole opera—that nobody laughs at the broad Irish in which Flavius delivers himself and his recitative; few are risibly affected by the apathetic, and often out-of-tune, roarings of Pollio:—than which stronger testimony could not be cited of the triumph of Miss Kemble; for solely by her influence do those who go to Covent-Garden to grin, return delighted.
But Apollo himself could not charm away the rich fun that pervades the English adaptation; nor the modest humour of its preface. It has been, hitherto, one characteristic of the lyric drama to consist of verse; rhyme has been thought not wholly dispensable. Those, however, who are “familiar with the writings of Ossian,” (and the works of the Covent-Garden adapter), will, according to the preface, at once see the fallacy of this. Rhyme is mere “jingle,”—rhythm, rhodomontade,—metre, monstrous,—versification, villanous,—in short, Ossian did not write poetry, neither does this learned prefacier—so it’s all nonsense!