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me that I had got a cold, and nothing could prevail circumspection. This air of diffidence highly disupon her to permit me from home. “No, my pleased my wife. "I never doubted, sir,” cried she, dear," said she, “our son Moses is a discreet boy, “Your readiness to be against my daughters and and can buy and sell to very good advantage: you me. You have more circumspection than is wantknow all our great bargains are of his purchasing. ed. However, I fancy when we come to ask adHe always stands out and higgles, and actually vice, we will apply to persons who seem to have tires them till he gets a bargain."
made use of it themselves."--"Whatever my own As I had some opinion of my son's prudence, I conduct may have been, madam," replied he, “is was willing enough to intrust him with this com- not the present question; though as I have made mission; and the next morning I perceived his sis- no use of advice myself, I should in conscience ters mighty busy in fitting out Moses for the fair; give it to those that will."— As I was apprehensive trimming his hair, brushing his buckles, andcocking this answer might draw on a repartee, making up his hat with pins. The business of the toilet be- by abuse what it wanted in wit, I changed the subing over, we had at last the satisfaction of seeing ject, by seeming to wonder what could keep our him mounted upon the colt, with a deal box before son so long at the fair, as it was now almost nighthim to bring home groceries in. He had on a coat fall.—"Never mind our son,” cried my wife, "demule of that cloth they call thunder and lightning, pend upon it he knows what he is about. I'll warwhich, though grown too short, was much too good rant we'll never see him sell his hen of a rainy day. to be thrown away. His waistcoat was of gosling I have seen him buy such bargains as would amaze green, and his sisters had tied his hair with a broad one. I'll tell you a good story about that, that will black riband. We all followed him several paces make you split your sides with laughing.--But as from the door, bawling after him good luck, good I live, yonder comes Moses, without a horse, and luck, till we could see him no longer.
the box at his back." He was scarcely gone, when Mr. Thornhill's As she spoke, Moses came slowly on foot, and butler came to congratulate us upon our good for- sweating under the deal box, which he had strapped tune, saying, that he overheard his young master round his shoulders like a pedler.—“Welcome, mention our names with great commendation. welcome, Moses: well; my boy, what have you
Good fortune seemed resolved not to come alone. brought us from the fair?”—“I have brought you Another footman from the same family followed, myself,” cried Moses, with a sly look, and resting with a card for my daughters, importing, that the the box on the dresser.—"Ah, Moses,” cried my two ladies had received such pleasing accounts from wife, “that we know; but where is the horse ?" "I Mr. Thornhill of us all, that, after a few previous have sold him," cried Moses, "for three pounds inquiries, they hoped to be perfectly satisfied. five shillings and two pence.”—“Well done, my ** Ay,” cried my wife, “ I now see it is no easy mat- good boy,” returned she; “I knew you would ter to get into the families of the great; but when touch them off. Between ourselves, three pounds one once gets in, then, as Moses says, one may go five shillings and two pence is no bad day's work. to sleep.” To this piece of humour, for she intend- Come let us have it then.”—“I have brought back ed it for wit, my daughters assented with a loud no money,” cried Moses again. "I have laid it all langh of pleasure. In short, such was her satis- out in a bargain, and here it is,” pulling out a bunfaction at this message, that she actually put her dle from his breast : "here they are; a gross of green hand in her pocket, and gave the messenger seven- spectacles, with silver rims and shagreen cases.” – pence halfpenny.
"A gross of green spectacles!" repeated my wife in This was to be our visiting day. The next that a faint voice. “ And you have parted with the came was Mr. Burchell, who had been at the fair. colt, and brought us back nothing but a gross of He brought my little ones a pennyworth of ginger- green paltry spectacles!”—“Dear mother,” cried bread each, which my wife undertook to keep for the boy, “why won't you listen to reason? I had them, and give them by lettersat a time. He brought them a dead bargain, or I should not have bought my daughters also a couple of boxes, in which they them. The silver rims alone will sell for double might keep wafers, snuff, patches, or even money, the money.”—"A fig for the silver rims,” cried when they got it. My wife was usually fond of a wea- my wife in a passion : "I dare swear they won't sel-skin purse, as being the most lucky; but this by sell for above half the money at the rate of broken the by. We had still a regard for Mr. Burchell, silver, five shillings an ounce.”—“You need be though his late rude behaviour was in some mea- under no uneasiness,” cried I, "about selling the sure displeasing; nor could we now avoid commu- rims, for they are not worth sixpence: for 1 pernicating our happiness to him, and asking his ad- ceive they are only copper varnished over.”— vice: although we seldom followed advice, we were “What," cried my wife, “not silver ! the rims not all ready enough to ask it. When he read the note silver!" "No," cried I, “no more silver than your from the two ladies, he shook his head, and observ- saucepan.”—"And so,” returned she, "we have ed, that an affair of this sort demanded the utmost (parted with the colt, and have only got a gross of
green spectacles, with copper rims and shagreen very little injury, who, lifting up his sword, fairly cases! A murrain take such trumpery. The struck off the poor dwarf's arm. He was now in blockhead has been imposed upon, and should have a woful plight; but the giant coming to his assistknown his company better."'--" There, my dear,” ance, in a short time left the two Saracens dead on cried I, "you are wrong, he should not have known the plain, and the dwarf cut off the dead man's them at all.”-“Marry, hang the idiot,” returned head out of spité. They then travelled on to anoshe, "to bring me such stuff; if I had them I would ther adventure. This was against three bloodythrow them in the fire.” “There again you are minded Satyrs, who were carrying away a damsel wrong, my dear,” cried I; "for though they be cop- in distress. The dwarf was not quite so fierce now per, we will keep them by us, as copper spectacles, as before; but for all that struck the first blow, you know, are better than nothing."
which was returned by another, that knocked out By this time the unfortunate Moses was unde- his eye; but the giant was soon up with them, and ceived. He now saw that he had been imposed had they not fled, would certainly have killed them upon by a prowling sharper, who, observing his every one. They were all very joyful for this vicfigure, had marked him for an easy prey. I there-tory, and the damsel who was relieved fell in love fore asked the circumstance of his deception. He with the giant, and married him. They now trasold the horse, it seems, and walked the fair in velled far, and farther than I can tell
, till they met search of another. A reverend looking man brought with a company of robbers. The giant, for the him to a tent, under pretence of having one to sell. first time was foremost now; but the dwarf was “Here,” continued Moses, "we met another man, no far behind. The battle was stout and long. very well dressed, who desired to borrow twenty Wherever the giant came, all fell before him; but pounds upon these, saying that he wanted money, the dwarf had like to have been killed more than and would dispose of them for a third of the value. once. At last the victory declared for the two ad. The first gentleman, who pretended to be my venturers; but the dwarf lost his leg. The dwarf friend, whispered me to buy them, and cautioned was now without an arm, a leg, and an eye, while me not to let so good an offer pass. I sent for Mr. the giant was without a single wound. Upon Flamborough, and they talked him up as finely as which he cried out to his little companion, “My they did me, and so at last we were persuaded to little hero, this is glorious sport! let us get one vicbuy the two gross between us."
tory more, and then we shall have honour for ever."
“No," cries the dwarf, who was by this time grown wiser, "no, I declare off; I'll fight no more: for I
find in every battle that you get all the honour and CHAPTER XIII.
rewards, but all the blows fall upon me.”
"I was going to moralize this fable, when our Mr. Burchell is found to be an enemy; for he has the confidence to give disagreeable advice.
attention was called off to a warm dispute between
my wife and Mr. Burchell, upon my daughters' inOur family had now made several attempts to be tended expedition to town. My wife very strenfine; but some unforeseen disaster demolished each uously insisted upon the advantages that would reas soon as projected. I endeavoured to take the sult from it; Mr. Burchell, on the contrary, disadvantage of every disappointment, to improve their suaded her with great ardour, and I stood neuter. good sense in proportion as they were frustrated in His present dissuasions seemed but the second part ambition. “You see, my children,” cried I, “how of those which were received with so ill a grace in little is to be got by attempts to impose upon the the morning. The dispute grew high, while poor world, in coping with our betters. Such as are Deborah, instead of reasoning stronger, talked poor, and will associate with none but the rich, are louder, and at last was obliged to take shelter from hated by those they avoid, and despised by those a defeat in clamour. The conclusion of her hathey follow. Unequal combinations are always rangue, however, was highly displeasing to us all: disadvantageous to the weaker side: the rich having "she knew," she said, "of some who had their own the pleasure, and the poor the inconveniencies that secret reasons for what they advised; but, for her result from them. But come, Dick, my boy, and part, she wished such to stay away from her house repeat the fable that you were reading to-day, for for the future.”—“Madam,”. cried Burchell, with the good of the company."
looks of great composure, which tended to inflame "Once upon a time," cried the child, "a giant her the more, "as for secret reasons, you are right: and a dwarf were friends, and kept together. I have secret reasons, which I forbear to mention, They made a bargain that they would never for- because you are not able to answer those of which sake each other, but go seek adventures. The first I make no secret: but I find my visits here are bebattle they fought was with two Saracens, and the come troublesome; I'll take my leave therefore now, dwarf, who was very courageous, dealt one of the and perhaps come once more to take a final farechampions a most angry blow. It did the Saracen well when I am quitting the country.” Thus say.
ing, he took up his hat, nor couid the attempts of Jed to inspect their conduct himself, and inform us Sophia, whose looks seemed to upbraid his pre- by letter of their behaviour. But it was thought incipitancy, prevent his going.
dispensably necessary that their appearance should When gone, we all regarded each other for some equal the greatness of their expectations; which minutes with confusion. My wife, who knew her could not be done without expense. We debated self to be the cause, strove to hide her concern therefore in full council what were the easiest with a forced smile, and an air of assurance, which methods of raising money, or more properly speakI was willing to reprove: “How, woman,” cried I ing, what we could most conveniently sell. The to her, "is it thus we treat strangers? Is it thus we deliberation was soon finished; it was found that return their kindness? Be assured, my dear, that our remaining horse was utterly useless for the these were the harshest words, and to me the most plough without his companion, and equally unfit unpleasing that ever escaped your lips!"-"Why for the road, as wanting an eye; it was therefore Fould he provoke me then?" replied she; “but I determined that we should dispose of him for the know the motives of his advice perfectly well. He purposes above mentioned, at the neighbouring would prevent my girls from going to town, that fair
, and to prevent imposition, that I should go be may have the pleasure of my youngest daugh- with him myself. Though this was one of the ter's company here at home. But whatever hap- first mercantile transactions of my life, yet I had pens, she shall choose better company than such no doubt about acquitting myself with reputation. low-lived fellows as he.”—"Low-lived, my dear, do The opinion a man forms of his own prudence is you call him?"' cried I; “it is very possible we may. measured by that of the company he keeps; and as mistake this man's character, for he seems upon mine was mostly in the family way, I had conceivsome occasions the most finished gentleman I ever ed no unfavourable sentiments of my worldly wisknew.—Tell me, Sophia, my girl, has he ever dom. My wife, however, next morning, partgiren you any secret instances of his attachment?" Jing, after I had got some paces from the door, " His conversation with me, sir,” replied my daugh-called me back, to advise me in a whisper, to have ter," has ever been sensible, modest, and pleasing. all my eyes about me. As to aught else, no, never. Once, indeed, I re
I had, in the usual forms, when I came to the member to have heard him say, he never knew a fair, put my horse through all his paces; but for woman who could find merit in a man that seemed some time had no bidders. At last a chapman appoor." "Such, my dear,” cried I, “is the com- proached, and after he had for a good while examinmon cant of all the unfortunate or idle. But Ied the horse round, finding him blind of one eye, he hope you have been taught to judge properly of would have nothing to say to him: a second came such men, and that it would be even madness to up, but observing he had a spavin, declared he expect happiness from one who has been so very would not take him for the driving home: a third bad an economist of his own. Your mother and 1 perceived he had a windgall, and would bid no have now better prospects for you. The next win- money: a fourth knew by his eye that he had the ter
, which you will probably spend in town, will botts : a fifth wondered what a plague I could do give you opportunities of making a more prudent at the fair with a blind, spavined, galled hack, that choice."
was only fit to be cut up for a dog-kennel. By What Sophia's reflections were upon this occa- this time I began to have a most hearty contempt sion I can't pretend to determine; but I was not for the poor animal myself, and was almost ashamdispleased at the bottom, that we were rid of a guest
ed at the approach of every customer; for though I from whom I had much to fear. Our breach of did not entirely believe all the fellows told me, yet hospitality went to my conscience a little; but I I reflected that the number of witnesses was a quickly silenced that monitor by two or three spe. strong presumption they were right; and St. Gregocious reasons, which served to satisfy and reconcile ry upon Good Works, professes himself to be of me to myself. The pain which conscience gives
the same opinion. the man who has already done wrong, is soon got I was in this mortifying situation, when a broover. Conscience is a coward, and those faults it ther clergyman, an old acquaintance, who had also has not strength enough to prevent, it seldom has business at the fair, came up, and shaking me by justice enough to accuse.
the hand, proposed adjourning to a public-house, and taking a glass of whatever we could get. I
readily closed with the offer, and entering an aleCHAPTER XIV.
house we were shown into a little back room,
where there was only a venerable old man, who sat Fresh Mortifications or a demonstration that seeming Calami- wholly intent over a large book, which he was ties may be real Blessings.
reading. I never in my life saw a figure that preThe journey of my daughters to town was now possessed me more favourably. His locks of silver resolved upon, Mr. Thornhill having kindly promis-gray venerably shaded his temples, and his green
old age seemed to be the result of health and benevo- lowed human speculations too much.—"Ay sir," lence. However, his presence did not interrupt our replied he, as if he had reserved all his learning to conversation : my friend and I discoursed on the va- that moment, "ay, sir, the world is in its dotage, rious turns of fortune we had met; the Whistonian and yet the cosmogony or creation of the world has controversy, my last pamphlet, the archdeacon's puzzled philosophers of all ages. What a medley reply, and tủe hard measure that was dealt me. of opinions have they not broached upon the creaBut our attention was in a short time taken off by tion of the world! Sanchoniathon, Manetho, Bethe appearance of a youth, who entering the room, rosus, and Ocellus Lucanus have all attempted it respectfully said something softly to the old stranger. in vain. The latter has these words, Anarchon “Make no apologies, my child,” said the old man, ara kai atelutaion to pan, which imply that all “to do good is a duty we owe to all our fellow-things have neither beginning nor end. Manetho creatures; take this, I wish it were more; but five also, who lived about the time of Nebuchadonpounds will relieve your distress, and you are wel-Asser,-- Asser being a Syriac word usually applicome.” The modest youth shed tears of gratitude, ed as a surname to the kings of that country, as and yet his gratitude was scarcely equal to mine. Teglat Phael-Asser, Nabon-Asser,-he, I say, I could have hugged the good old man in my arms, formed a conjecture equally absurd; for as we usuhis benevolence pleased me so. He continued to ally say, ek to biblion kubernetes, which implies read, and we resumed our conversation, until my that books will never teach the world; so he atcompanion, after some time, recollecting that he tempted to investigate-But, sir, I ask pardon, I had business to transact in the fair, promised to be am straying from the ques n.”—That he actual. soon back, adding, that he always desired to have ly was; nor could I for my life see how the creaas much of Dr. Primrose's company as possible. tion of the world had any thing to do with the The old gentleman hearing my name mentioned, business I was talking of; but it was sufficient to seemed to look at me with attention for some time, show me that he was a man of letters, and I now and when my friend was gone, most respectfully reverenced him the more. I was resolved therefore demanded if I was any way related to the great to bring him to the touchstone; but he was too Primrose, that courageous monogamist, who had mild and too gentle to contend for victory. Whenbeen the bulwark of the church. Never did my ever I made an observation that looked like a heart feel sincerer rapture than at that moment. challenge to controversy, he would smile, shake “Sir," cried I, " the applause of so good a man, as his head, and say nothing; by which I understood I am sure you are, adds to that happiness in my he could say much, if he thought proper. The breast which your benevolence has already excited. subject therefore insensibly changed from the You behold before you, sir, that Dr. Primrose, the business of antiquity to that which brought us monogamist, whom you have been pleased to call both to the fair: mine, I told him, was to sell a great. You here see that unfortunate divine, who horse, and very luckily indeed, his was to buy one has so long, and it would ill become me to say suc- for one of his tenants. My horse was soon processfully, fought against the deuterogomy of the duced, and in fine we struck a bargain. Nothing age.”—“Sir," cried the stranger, struck with awe, now remained but to pay me, and he accordingly “ " I fear I have been too familiar; but you'll forgive pulled out a thirty pound note, and bid me change 1 my curiosity, sir: I beg pardon.”—“Sir," cried I, 'it
. Not being in a capacity of complying with this grasping his hand, “ you are so far from displeas- demand, he ordered his footman to be called up, ing me by your familiarity, that I must beg you'll who made his appearance in a very genteel livery. accept my friendship, as you already have my es- “Here, Abraham,” cried he, "go and get gold for teem.”-“Then with gratitude I accept the offer," this; you'll do it at neighbour Jackson's or any cried he, squeezing me by the hand, “thou glorious where.” While the fellow was gone, he enterpillar of unshaken orthodoxy! and do I behold—"tained me with a pathetic harangue on the great I here interrupted what he was going to say; for scarcity of silver, which I undertook to improve, by though, as an author, I could digest no small share deploring also the great scarcity of gold; so that hy of flattery, yet now my modesty would permit no the time Abraham returned, we had both agreed more. However, no lovers in romance ever ce that money was never so hard to be come at as mented a more instantaneous friendship. We now, Abraham returned to inform us, that he hail talked upon several subjects: at first I thought he been over the whole fair, and could not get change, seemed rather devout than learned, and began to though he had offered half a crown for doing it. think he despised all human doctrines as dross. This was a very great disappointment to us all; Yet this no way lessened him in my esteem; for I but the old gentleman, having paused a little, askhad for some time begun privately to harbour such ed me if I knew one Solomon Flamborough in my an opinion myself. I therefore took occasion to part of the country? Upon replying that he was observe, that the world in general began to be my nextdoor neighbour; "If that be the caso blamably indifferent as to doctrinal matters, and fol- then,” returned he, "I believe we shall deal. You
shall have a draft upon him, payable at sight; and to excite envy, and too inoffensive to create dislet me tell you, he is as warm a man as any within gust. Ive miles round him. Honest Solomon and I have been acquainted for many years together. I remember I always beat him at three jumps; but he could
CHAPTER XV. hop on one leg farther than I.” A draft upon my neighbour was to me the same as money; for I was all Mr. Burchell's villany at once detected. The folly of being
over-wise. safficiently convinced of his ability. The draft was signed, and put into my hands, and Mr. Jenkin
That evening, and a part of the following day, son, the old gentleman, his man Abraham, and was employed in fruitless attempts to discover our my horse, old Blackberry, trotted off very well enemies: scarcely a family in the neighbourhood pleased with each other.
but incurred our suspicions, and each of us had After a short interval, being left to reflection, I reasons for our opinion best known to ourselves. began to recollect that I had done wrong in taking As we were in this perplexity, one of our little boys, å draft from a stranger, and so prudently resolved who had been playing abroad, brought in a letterupon following the purchaser, and having back my case, which he found on the green. It was quickly horse. But this was now too late : I therefore known to belong to Mr. Burchell
, with whom it måde directly homewards, resolving to get the draft had been seen, and, upon examination, contained changed into money at my friend's ás fast as pos- some hints upon different subjects; but what parsible. I found my honest neighbour smoking his ticularly engaged our attention was a sealed note pipe at his own door, and informing him that I had superscribed, The copy of a letter to be sent to the a small bill upon him, he read it twice over. “You two ladics at Thornhill-castle. It instantly occurcan read the name, I suppose," cried I, “Ephraim red that he was the base informer, and we delibeJenkinson.” “Yes," returned he, "the name is rated whether the note should not be broke open. written plain enough, and I know the gentleman I was against it; but Sophia, who said she was to the greatest rascal under the canopy of heaven. sure that of all men he would be the last to be This is the very same rogue who sold us the spec- guilty of so much basenese, insisted upon its being tacles. Was he not a venerable looking man, with read. In this she was seconded by the rest of the gray hair, and no flaps to his pocket-holes? And family, and at their joint solicitation I read as folad he not talk a long string of learning about lows : Greek, and cosmogony, and the world ?" To this I replied with a groan.
“Ay," continued he, " hel" LADIES, has but that one piece of learning in the world, and “The bearer will sufficiently satisfy you as to be always talks it away whenever he finds a scho- the person from whom this comes: one at least the lar in company; but I know the rogue, and will friend of innocence, and ready to prevent its being catch him yet.”
seduced. I am informed for a truth that you have Though I was already sufficiently mortified, my some intention of bringing two young ladies to greatest struggle was to come, in facing my wife town, whom I have some knowledge of, under the and daughters. No truant was ever more afraid character of companions. As I would neither have of returning to school, there to be hold the master's simplicity imposed upon, nor virtue contaminated, visage, than I was of going home. I was deter- I must offer it as my opinion, that the impropriety mined, however, to anticipate their fury, by first of such a step will be attended with dangerous Ling into a passion myself.
consequences. It has never been my way to treat But, alas! upon entering, I found the family no the infamous or the lewd with severity ; nor should way disposed for battle. My wife and girls were 1 now have taken this method of explaining myself, all in tears, Mr. Thornhill having been there that or reproving folly, did it not aim at guilt. Take day to inform them, that their journey to town was therefore the admonition of a friend, and seriously entirely over. The two ladies having heard re- retlect on the consequences of introducing infamy ports of us from some malicious person about us, and vice into retreats, where peace and innocence were that day set out for London. He could nei- have hitherto resided.” ther discover the tendency, nor the author of these; but whatever they might be, or whoever might have Our doubts were now at an end. There seemed breached them, he continued to assure our family indeed something applicable to both sides in this of his friendship and protection. I found, there- letter, and its censures might as well be referred to fore, that they bore my disappointment with great those to whom it was written, as to us; but the Tesignation, as it was eclipsed in the greatness of malicious meaning was obvious, and we went no their own. But what perplexed us most, was to farther. My wife had scarcely patience to hear think who could be so base as to asperse the cha- me to the end, but railed at the writer with unreracter of a family so harmless as ours, tvo humble'strained resentment. Olivia was equally severe,