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AN OLD-ESTABLISHED BUSINESS. "Never mind the world, my dear," wrote Goldsmith ; " you were never in a better place in your life." Although it is a doubtful kind of consolation, a visit to an undertaking establishment, or to a cemetery, is apt to remind us that this is so, and may inspire a feel ing of content which was previously absent. It may even be productive of a certain feeling of pleasure such as Addison confessed he derived from his oft-repeated visits to Westminster Abbey where lie England's illustrious dead. We admire even when we mourn, and it will be admitted by all that a beautiful coffin, as well as a splendid tombstone, appeals to the artistic eye with the same force as everything else removed from the common. An undertaking business of the dimensions of that conducted by W. G. Apps of Moor-street, Fitzroy, necessitates a large expenditure of capital in the purchase of an almost innumerable number of appurten ances, irrespective of what is generally considered to constitute the stock-in trade. We think of coffins and shrouds, hearses and plumes, and forget the thousand -and one details associ ated with the paraphernalia of mourning, and which only a long apprenticeship' would enable us to enumerate. Mr. Apps in the course of an experience extending over 40 years in Fitzroy alone, has made it a rule always to have in stock every requirement of the trade, and in all possible' varieties. Wreaths and em blems of every description of design in brass, silver and other metals; the latest ideas in shrouds (for there are fashions in such things,) and in coffin furniture, etc., occupy the long rows of drawers which line the showroom, as well as other rooms of the establish ment in Moor street. The principal object of our visit was to inspect the showroom which adjoins the office, on the ground floor, and has recently been enlarged and in every way improved. Here are kept on view examples of coffins In polished oak, kauri pine and cedar, the wood chiefly used in the manufacture of the better class; but whatever the material, whether dear or cheap, a silver-moutned ' Nelson " with perhaps its leaden shell or one of the plainest description, they present the same evidences of careful and skilled workmanship. In a corner-of the well-lighted room, we noticed a   case containing an array of costly instruments used in the process of em balming which the firm is frequently called upon to undertake, particularly in summer when possibly it is desired to convey the deceased a long distance. Not with odorous gums and balms as of old is the order accomplished, but with a liquid preparation which is injected into the veins. The wonderful pre servative effect is acknowledged in numerous letters received by Mr. Apps, which indicate that the fluid would not a be altogether misnamed if it were called the elixir vitae. The commodious workroom is now situate upstairs at the rear of the building.just sufficiently far away to secure absolute quietness in the office. Coffins piled one on the other 'extend in long rows in this   and other parts of the building, and   would impress the visitor with the belief that the firm was preparing for a plague visitation, were he not told   that Mr. Apps believes in maintaining   an undertaker's stock equal to the the immediate supply of any and every   description of order. Each of these coffins will doubtless some day be a a receptacle for what the lady in Comus calls " the corporal rind," and must therefore be regarded as no ordinary furniture, although they are now un polished unplated and untrimmed. So some day, as Lord Byron writes in   Childe Harold, it may be the mis fortune of some of us to be "un- knelled, uncoffined and unknown," a line which permits the parody.. On the afternoon of our visit, a polisher was imparting a finish to a diminutive oak coffin which was to contain the remains of "a fair child beauty," the son of a distinguished citizen. The coach house and stables of the firm occupy a large area of ground on the opposite side of Moor-street. The edifice, of a very substantial character, and wood-paved throughout, contains quite a retinue of hearses and mourn ing coaches. One of the former, built to Mr. App's order by a colonial firm, is a magnificent equipage and an - improvement even upon another of - English design and make also much in demand. It can be understood that these stately vehicles, as well as the numerous tasteful and roomy mourning coaches represent a large expenditure, an amount which increases as we view the large stacks of oak, kauri pine, cedar, white pine and other timbers which lie seasoning in the spacious rooms aloft. Our article only permits a brief reference to the livery, the comfortable grooms' quarters, and the other adjuncts of the establishment, and to its branches in the city (Lonsdale street,) St. Kilda and Elsternwick. It is evident that the firm of   W. G. Apps is in a position to minister to every mourning -require ment, and that the business is rapidly becoming one of the largest of its kind in Australia. The firm has always strictly observed the etiquette of the trade, and partly to this and to the tact and courtesy which distinguish every dealing with its patrons, rich - and poor, can be attributed its success.