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ESSAYS.

BY

AN OCTOGENARIAN.

“Nihil habeo quod accusem senectutem.”-CICERO DE SENECTUTE, Cap. v.

VOL. I.

CORK:
PRINTED BY G. NASH, 16, PRINCE'S STREET.

1850.

NOT PUBLISHED.

TO

Marianne, Wife of Thomas Gallury, Esq.

AND

žarah Aunr, Wife of Edward Johu Collins, Esq.

MY BELOVED CHILDREN,

Not only as, to the most cherished objects of my affections, but, as to you solely have I to acknowledge any aid in the composition of these volumes, do I dedicate them to you. By you were several of their contained subjects suggested to me. By you were the occasional inaccuracies that escaped me at once rectified; and by you was every sheet from the pen or press revised. By you again, whenever disposed to yield to the torpid influence of years, have I been roused to renewed exertion, while, to your tender care of my health and comforts, I owe, under Providence, in plenitude of enjoyment, many years of domestic happiness, enhanced and completed by seeing it conferred on yourselves by those to whom you have that of being united.

Accept then this expression, through, I trust, an enduring channel, of a fond Father's obligations, which have been to him the most grateful proof his children could give of their sense of his attention to their education, and its suited direction, in principle, act, and feeling, to the knowledge and discharge of their duties to God and Society.

That you should entitle yourselves to the blessings of Heaven in their choicest dispensation, has ever been my most fervent prayer, and shall be the last supplication of, what, in pleasurable repetition, I sign myself, my dearest children

Your fond Father,

JAMES ROCHE.

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course of a long article on the character of the French soldier, publishes the following note :-"Some people say that the air of Malbrook' dates, not from the battle of Mal. plaquet (1709), but from the time of the Crusades, 600 years before. According to a tradition discovered and commented on by M. de Chateaubriand, this air has descended to us from the Arabs, and the song itself belongs to the Middle Ages, being a sort of legend of a Crusader named Mambrou. It was this legend, both words and music, which Mme. Poitrine was singing in order to lun her Royal foster-child, Louis XVI.'s son, to sleep, when she was surprised in the act by Marie Antoinette, who found the air to her liking, and brought it into fashion. It is only by a transformation of names, not unfrequent in such matters, that, in the opinion of the partisans of this tradition, the name of the Duke of Marlborough, rendered illus. trious by the battle just mentioned, has been substituted for that of Mambron. Let us add that, according to M. Arago, at the time of the great Egyptian expedition, an experiment was made to see whether the Egyptians could feel the beauties of learned music. A numerous orchestra at Cairo played dumerous melodies, songs, marches, &c., composed by the best masters, before an Egyptian auditory, but the lätter did not evince the slightest pleasure ; upon which Monge, in a fit of ill-humour, exclaimed that the air of Malbrook was the only one worthy of such brutes. The orchestra took the hint, and played the air in magnificent style. A murmur of pleasure and satisfaction was soon elicited from the Egyptians present, who praised it highly. This would seem to confirm the legend alluded to by M. de Chateaubriand. It is, moreover, evident that in the song of Malbrook there is not a word or detail that does not point to the era of feudal castles and distant wars, while there is not one recalling to mind the camp and palace life of the times of Louis XIV. and Louis XV." We may add that in Reminiscences of an Octogenarian, published 15 or 20 years back by Mr. James Roche, of Cork, well known for his great learning and research, he stated incidentally that when Captain Cook visited in 1770 the eastern coast of Aug. tralia, the band of his vessel one day happening to play Malbrook, the natives instantly recognized the air as an old acquaintance, and expressed their great satisfaction at hearing it. At that time no other Europeans had ever visited that part of the world.-Gulignani's fressender.

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