best efforts of Mr Cruikshank's genius, and though not quite so highly laboured as some of his later productions, are none the worse, in our opinion, for their comparative want of finish. All the effects are perfectly given, and the expression as good as it could be in the most delicate engraving upon steel. The artist's style, too, was then completely formed; and, for our parts, we should say that we preferred his manner of 1825 to any other which he has adopted since. The first picture, which is called * The Point of Honour,' illustrates the old story of the officer who, on being accused of cowardice for refusing to fight a duel, came among his brother officers and flung a lighted grenade down upon the floor, before which his comrades fled ignominiously. This design is capital, and the outward rush of heroes, walking, trampling, twisting, scuffling at the door, is in the best style of the grotesque. You see but the back of most of these gentlemen, into which, nevertheless, the artist has managed to throw an expression of ludicrous agony that one could scarcely have expected to find in such a part of the human figure. The next plate is not less good. It represents a couple who, having been found one night tipsy, and lying in the same gutter, were, by a charitable though misguided gentleman, supposed to be man and wife, and put comfortably to bed together. The morning came; fancy the surprise of this interesting pair when they awoke and discovered their situation. Fancy the manner, too, in which Cruikshank has depicted them, to which words cannot do justice. It is needless to state that this fortuitous and temporary union was followed by one more lasting and sentimental, and that these two worthy persons were married, and lived happily ever after.
We should like to go through every one of these prints. There is the jolly miller, who, returning home at night, calls upon his wife to get him a supper, and falls too upon rashers of bacon and ale. How he gormandises, that jolly miller! rasher after rasher, how they pass away frizzling and smoking from the gridiron down that immense grinning gulf of a mouth. Poor wife! how she pines and frets at that untimely hour of midnight to be obliged to fry, fry, fry perpetually, and minister to the monster's appetite. And yonder in the clock, what agonized face is that we see ? By heavens, it is the squire of the parish. What business has he there ? Let us not ask. Suffice it to say, that
he has, in the hurry of the moment, left up stairs his br --
his -- psha! a part of his dress, in short, with a number of bank- notes in the pockets. Look in the next page, and you will see the ferocious, bacon-devouring ruffian of a miller is actually causing this garment to be carried through the village and cried