Mrs. Perkin's Ball, by William Makepeace Thackeray

Mr. Hicks.

Mr Hicks

It is worth twopence to see Miss Bunion and Poseidon Hicks, the great poet, conversing with one another, and to talk of one to the other afterwards. How they hate each other! I (in my wicked way) have sent Hicks almost raving mad, by praising Bunion to him in confidence; and you can drive Bunion out of the room by a few judicious panegyrics of Hicks.

Hicks first burst upon the astonished world with poems, in the Byronic manner: “The Death-Shriek,” “The Bastard of Lara,” “The Atabal,” “The Fire-Ship of Botzaris,” and other works. His “Love Lays,” in Mr. Moore’s early style, were pronounced to be wonderfully precocious for a young gentleman then only thirteen, and in a commercial academy, at Tooting.

Subsequently, this great bard became less passionate and more thoughtful; and, at the age of twenty, wrote “Idiosyncracy” (in forty books, 4to.): “Ararat,” “a stupendous epic,” as the reviews said; and “The Megatheria,” “a magnificent contribution to our pre-Adamite literature,” according to the same authorities. Not having read these works, it would ill become me to judge them; but I know that poor Jingle, the publisher, always attributed his insolvency to the latter epic, which was magnificently printed in elephant folio.

Hicks has now taken a classical turn, and has brought out “Poseidon,” “Iacchus,” “Hephaestus,” and I dare say is going through the mythology. But I should not like to try him at a passage of the Greek Delectus, any more than twenty thousand others of us who have had a “classical education.”

Hicks was taken in an inspired attitude regarding the chandelier, and pretending he didn’t know that Miss Pettifer was looking at him.

Her name is Anna Maria (daughter of Higgs and Pettifer, solicitors, Bedford Row); but Hicks calls her “Ianthe” in his album verses, and is himself an eminent drysalter in the city.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 12:00