Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub

from a political opponent, and revamped and reissued from nullification and State rights. Calhoun and Hayne never time to time in the interest of those who desire to weaken went beyond him in his reckless attacks on national suthe pillars of our nationality. In the disturbed era preced- premacy. If the Kentucky Resolutions, now existing in ing the adoption of our Federal Constitution, when the form Jefferson's own band, had been penned by Alexander H. of government to be instituted in the United States was Stephens in the palmiest days of the Rebellion, they could still an open question, Hamilton believed and taught that not have been more heavily freighted with the deadly herin the history of mankind the best example of civil liberty esies of secession. combined with social oriler had been afforded by the gov Upon this man's testimony we are asked to believe that ernment of Great Britain. And what he said was true. Hamilton-Hamilton who wrote the preamble to the ConLet him who can, point to a solitary state, ancient or mod-stitution, and fought for that instrument a victorious battle ern, in which the liberty of the citizen has been as well against a two-thirds majority in the convention at Poughguarded as under the constitution of the British monarchy. keepsie—was a monarchist. The evidence is not sufficient The Cromwellian principle was that every Englishman In after years when Jefferson was hard pressed to give some shall be protected if it requires every other Englishman to substantial evidence of his oft-repeated charges against Hamdo it. And this very day, if in one of the provinces of Great ilton he could adduce nothing more tangible than an afterBritain a company of political thugs and midnight assassins dinner remark which Hamilton was said to have made at should bind themselves with an oath, put on masks, and Jefferson's own table, to the effect that the British constisally forth to terrify, burn, and murder, the eyeballs of the tution might be regarded as the best in the world. The British lion would turn green with rage, and in three days evidence does not conviet. And even if it did, it is high he would make Rome howl

time for the American people to be plainly told that such a All this Hamilton said-and more. He said it when the government as that of Great Britain, with its magnificent question of government in America was still an open ques House of Commons and responsible Ministry, is better, is tion. He constantly cited the precedents of English liberty, to be preferred, is a safer refuge for civil liberty than any and kept his countrymen ever reminded of that which they nondescript secession confederacy. But while this is true, were ever prone to forget, namely, that it was English lib- be it never forgotten that the consolidated, indivisible, reerty which the Americans fought for and won in the war of publican Union, to the defense of which Hamilton contrithe Revolution. He would have the people remember that buted the vast resources of his genius, is infinitely better in the glorious era of the Commonwealth England had than either confederacy or kingdom. Vive la Republique! fought a battle for America, just as America had now fought In the United States the problem has been not only to a battle for England. Their Cromwell was our Cromwell, emancipate man and keep him free, but also to create a nation and our Washington was their Washington. Their Milton of freemen with whom the will of the majority shall have the was our Milton, and our Franklin was theirs. To say this, force of sovereign law. Jefferson seized the first part of this and to repeat it over and over, was not to utter sympathy problem; Hamilton grasped it all. It was because Jefferson with monarchical institutions: it was the soundest of all re could not and would not see the importance of transforming publicanism. It was the most loyal political truth in the the United States into a nation that he remained to his world.

dying day wedded to the destructive theories of democracy. Jefferson was not a competent witness against Hamilton. He was a great patriot, and a bad statesman. His ability to The testimony of Alexander H. Stephens and Robert destroy existing evils was only equaled by his inability to Toombs would hardly be accepted against the political prin- create new institutions. He could write the Declaration of ciples of Sumner and Morton. Jefferson was honest, but he Independence, but could not appreciate the grandeur of the was embittered. Every vein in him was tide-full of the vir Union. He could declare the rights of man, but could not tues and vices of radicalism. He was fired with intense pre construct or even conceive the organic forms necessary to judices. He had brooded over the evils of tyranny until he

preserve them. could have distrusted the moon for having the shape of Ladies and gentlemen, I say without prejudice or passion a crescent. He could have mistaken the shadow of a stork that the later governmental theories of Thomas Jefferson in the marshes of the Chickahominy for the living apparition have been the band of American politics. The Jeffersonian of George III. Jefferson was for a democracy or nothing. A Democracy, by itself, means anarchy and ruin. It means man who could say that he found more pleasure in planting the dissolution of political unity and the lapse of all things peas than he did in the Constitution of the United States into chaos. If one plan, one purpose, one hope, one desting was not a competent witness against the framers of that be good for the American people, or for any people, then the Constitution. He who, while holding the second office in the Jeffersonian Democracy is not good except in so far as it gift of his country, declared that under the administrations yields to the Hamiltonian Union. In the history of the past of Washington and John Adams the government of the the democracy has done marvels. It has pulled down the United States had been more arbitrary and tyrannical than thrones of despotism. Here in the West it has lighted a that of England, at the same time saying that the old State torch which shall never be extinguished. It has startled governments were the best in the world, could hardly be ex the nations by its courage and magnanimity. It has writpected to speak the truth of one who had striven with all his ten Sic Semper Tyrannis in a record that shall outlast the might to give the Union additional power and prerogatives. obelisks of Egypt. It has made arbitrary power odious and Jefferson openly accused Washington of being a monarchist. damned the doctrine of the domination of the few over the He said that John Adams and Edmund Randolph were mon many with an everlasting curse. It has given to liberty a archists. He declared that all the Federalists were mon new definition in the language of mankind. It has preached archists, and that with the continuation of Federalism the the pure gospel of human nature in the presence of trembling Revolution would have been fought in vain. He «roaked kings, and has painted an aureole of glory about the head of on this question through all the figures and forms of speech. him who dares to die for freedom. But the Jeffersonian de It is amazing to what extent he carried his denunciations of mocracy, great as it is, must bend the knee to the Hamil those who held the doctrine of a consolidated Union. Even tonian Union. Otherwise there is nothing before us but after the close of Washington's administration, when the discord, dismemberment, and death. United States under the Constitution had taken high rank The democratic instinct is still ready, as it has ever been, among the nations of the earth, he poured out in the Ken to defeat itself by audacity. It cries out for liberty, equality, tucky and Virginia Resolutions of '98 all the rank poison of fraternity; but it forgets that liberty, equality, and frater

he thi

[ocr errors]

nity can exist only within the bulwarks of the nation. Out- THE BIOLOGISTS ON VIVISECTION! side of the strong towers of union there is nothing but anarchy, disintegration, and barbarism.

[Mr. Henry Bergh lectured in Association Hall, in New York, one I am for all the rights of the Jeffersonian Democracy, and

evening in the early part of February, on vivisection, thus pushing I am for all the powers of the Hamiltonian Union. I am

his battle to prevent cruelty to animals to the very door of the medi-

cal colleges. He said: for the Jeffersonian Democracy under the Hamiltonian

"If we have no right to torture a man, why torture a dog? Why Union. This is the key of American liberty. Give us the not perform these vivisections on a human being?" Here there were unobstructed exercise of democratic rights under the un groans and hisses from medical students in the gallery, and apobstructed exercise of national supremacy, and you have

plause from the audience on the floor. After stating that not a single

fact tending to benefit mankind had been evolved by vivisection, the prize for which the ages have contended. But if any Mr. Bergh said: "Accident is the parent of all original discoveries, man will put the Hamiltonian Union under the feet of a

though millions of animals have been tortured in vain.” A storm

of hisses was created by the remark. "Practical physiology is a sole-disruptive Democracy turn upon him the guns of Gettys- cism, and not a science. It learns nothing, teaches nothing." burg.

**The motheaths your garments for subsistence," said Mr. Bergh,

in conclusion, and the savage Indian scalps you for revenge, but As between the nation and the state, I say, down with the vivisectionist should be placed under a social ban, for Hades can the state and up with the nation. The Hamiltonian maxim

not produce the scenes they do. Are these the men to call to the

bedsides of your families? Why, such professional men are worse is the one thing cardinal in American politics. How other than disease itself. wise shall the rights of man be made secure except by the This question is attracting a great deal of attention in Europe, and supremacy of law and the oneness of the nation ? Where it is being elaborately and ably discussed in some of the leading shall we go for the maintenance of individual liberty except | English magazines. Our readers will find below the main portion of to the flag of "the States in Empire?" How shall the pre

an article on "The Biologists on Vivisection,” by R. H. Hutton, in

the Nineteenth Century.] cious rights of local self-government-the right of every man to adjudge his own affairs according to his will-be When this controversy first arose, Professor Ray Lankesguaranteed and perpetuated except by the supreme power ter, a most distinguished man among English physiologists, of unequivocal nationality?

wrote as follows to a weekly journal: This one thing essential to the perpetuity of his country If Professor Schiff has carefully and intelligently experimented Hamilton grasped with greater sagacity and profounder with the dogs entrusted to him, there is certainly no reason to repenetration than did any other man of the epoch. The rest proach him with their large number. [The statement was that 700 doubted, wavered, compromised; he only stood fast, hold

dogs had been vivisected by the Professor.) If you allow experiing the anchor. He divined the future. He saw in the dis

ments at all, you must admit the more of it the better, since it is tance the storms and perils to which the American people ology demanding experimentai solution will increase in something

very certain that for many years to come the problems of physiwere to be exposed. He understood the besetting sins of

like geometrical ratio, instead of decreasing.* democracy as well as he understood the vices of despotism.

I have heard Professor Ray Lankester blamed for this The study of history gave him his materials; genius gave language as if it were basty and ill-considered; but it seems him his insight. Every relapse of antiquity he analyzed to

to me that whether prudent or not for the cause he had at its elements and causes. Every abortive project of the hu

heart, it was at any rate perfectly candid, and a thoroughly man race struggling for freedom he read as an open book. I just corollary from the demands which the physiologistsEvery complication and tendency of modern Europe he

then put forward; nay, that the tone of the profession. knew by heart. Hamilton avait divine l'Europe,” said though it has since been sedulously reserved as to the quanTalleyrand. To the wisdom of the philosopher he added

tity of pain it may be necessary to inflict, has been steadily the vision of the prophet. With the lore of the jurist and

coming up to Professor Ray Lankester's standard in the atstatesman he joined the virtues of the patriot and philan-titude it has assumed. And it is indeed obvious that if phythropist.

siologists themselves are the only fit judges of the pain they If Alexander Hamilton could have had his way he would

ought to inflict, if they are right in asserting, as all those have choked the serpent of disunion even as Hercules

who have considered the question, and who take this side, strangled the Hydra. If he could have had his way the

do assert, that no thoroughly educated physiologist should pernicious doctrines of secession and dismemberment,

shrink from performing any number of well considered eswhether in New England or, Carolina, would have died

periments, however full of torture to the victims, which he: without an advocate. If he could have had his way the

deenis essential to the eliciting of any important truth, then patriotic but infatuated people of the Southern States would

there can be no escape from Professor Ray Lankester's posinever have closed their hearts to the blessed memories of tion. In investigations of this sort a large enough number the Revolution and rushed blindly after the shameful ban

of experiments to yield a safe average is at least as necessary, ners of disunion, into the dark gorges of blood and death.

probably more so, than in purely physical investigations; If Hamilton could have had his way the atrocities of Fort

for in the highly organized beings there is more risk of Pillow and Belle Isle, the horrors of Andersonville and

capricious variations due to the peculiarities of individual Libby would never have stained the escutcheon of our

constitutions, and unless errors of this kind can be elimicountry or blackened the annals of the world. If he could

nated, the deductions from them may be entirely vitiated, have had his way the fairest portion of our land would not

and may prove misleading instead of trustworthy. Not a to-day be sitting in darkness and gloom, crouching in the physiologist of them all has been found to condemn Profes-corner of the temple of liberty, but half recovered from the

sor Rutherford's reduplicated series of severe operations on wild insanity and fierce hatred of bloody war. ( that the

dogs paralyzed, but not rendered the less sensitive to pain, day may speedily dawn when the distrust and suspicion of by curari, experiments avowedly made solely to test the the disruptive and hostile South shall give place to return-effect of various drugs in stimulating the secretion of bile. ing confidence in the glory of the nation and love for the

Nor can any one who maintains the principles of Sir James starry banner of that indissoluble union made sacred by the Paget, much less of Dr. Wilks-and Professor Owen, consistsorrows of our fathers!

ently condemn such reduplicated experiments. They set

out with the assumption that any amount of animal pain NAMES OF THE POPES.—The custom of each Pope taking a

which any properly educated physiologist is willing to infresh name on his assuming the pontificate originated A. flict in the cause of science is justifiable, and that it musti D. 687 with Pope Sergius, whose original name signified. Swine-snout.

* Letter to the Spectator: January 10, 1874.

rest with the individual judgment and conscience of the "the famous, it ought rather to have been called the inindividual physiologist to decide whether the play is worth

famous experiment.” But if you read the medical journals the candle or not; and they can not therefore say in any in now, there is hardly a trace of the same tone of passionate dividual case, “Clearly this man has gone too far; his ob- indignation against very agonizing experiments. Compare ject was scientific indeed, but trivial, and the number of his the Lancet of 1875 with the Lancet of 1881, and no one can victims was too great.” They dare not say "Thus far and fail to be struck with the extraordinary change of tone, the no farther,” without laying themselves open to the reply disappearance almost of the apologetic line of excuse for that they had already conceded the scientific judgment of vivisection, and the appearance in its place of a strongly the individual operator ought to be the sole judge there. aggressive scorn for the humanitarians, and of a tone of Indeed if we are to look at physiology solely as an experi- assertion for the absolute right of physiologists, so long as mental science, and in no other light, I should suppose that they have had a complete education on these matters, to do

Professor Lankester is right. The more of wisely-adjusted what they will in the cause of science without being called .experiments you perform for a specific end, the better will upon to render an account to any one. Even in speaking of

be your progress in the understanding of the physiological Mugendie, so humble and noble a thinker as Sir James Laws involved. At all events, we know as a matter of fact Paget now expresses none of the disgust which evidently that wherever these experiments are pursued without re filled the late Professor Sharpey at the mention of that sci:striction, the more numerous grow the new problems which entific tormentor's name. I was extremely struck by the they suggest, whether the solutions of the old problems sedulously moderate tone of this passage: furnished by them be satisfactory or otherwise. If the

I think it probable that the pain inflicted in such experiments as I physiological laboratory is to flourish in England as it

saw done by Magendie was greater than that caused by any generally flourishes in Germany, France, and Italy, the chances are

permitted sport; it was as bad as that I saw given to horses in a that Professor Lankester's anticipations will be verified, bull-fight, or which I supposed to have been given in dog-fighting or and that “the problems of physiology demanding experi- bear-haiting. I never saw anything in his or any other expeşinients imental solution will increase in something like geometrical more horrible than is shown in many of Snyder's boar hunts, or in ratio instead of decreasing.” What is required, then, by the

Landseer's “Death of the Otter." physiologists is this, that while endeavoring to put down If any one will look at Professor Sharpey's account of the all the cruel amusements, and to substitute for the cruel "infamous" experiment to which he refers (which, howmodes of terminating life the most speedy and painless we ever, Sir James Paget, perhaps, may not have seen), it will can find, we shall at the same time sanction the unrestricted be difficult, I think, for him to imagine any anguish which growth of a new profession of very great dignity and in- "sport,” however cruel, could inflict that could come near dluence, in which animal torture when weighed against it. But the fashion nowadays-a fashion partly, I think, due human gains of any kind, whether purely intellectual or to the frequent use of curari in all experiments in which directly beneficial to the bodily health and life of men, are anesthetics are not used, a poison which, by paralyzing to be accounted just as light in the balances as the individual the motor nerves, prevents all the usual sigus of agony-is ánvestigator chooses to consider it. Does any man in his to speak in the most minimising and depreciating tone of -senses really believe that such a revolution as this can be the probable amount of pain suffered by the victims of effected without lowering enormously the popular consider-physiological experiment, the contortions of whose bodies ution for animal suffering? If it is to be a final answer to have perhaps all been stilled by a poison which, in Claude every question as to the "why" that the utility of the result Bernard's opinion, rather increased than diminished the

far outweighs the mischief of inflicting so much pain, how sufferings under the knife. It is to me perfectly clear that are we to answer the brutal wagoner or the brutal rat the first effect of the new movement has been, by familiarcatcher who declares that as it is essential for the duty he | izing men with the subject, to diminish in a most striking has undertaken to obtain a certain result in a certain time, degree the professional abhorrence of even the cruelest and at a certain cost, the end must justify the means, even vivisections; and as one result of this, though no doubt a though the team be over-driven, or the rats poisoned by the result produced without their own knowledge, to persuade most agonizing of all poisons, to obtain it? You can not the professional apologists for the practice that the actual by any possibility inaugurate a new and highly distin- sufferings inflicted on the victims are in almost all cases guished profession of persons whose business it is known comparatively trifling, thouģh it is quite certain that if any to be to inflict on animals any amount of suffering requisite one were to propose to inflict the same on a criminal under for the special purpose of benefiting men, without giving a a sentence of death, humane men like Sir James Paget, new impulse to the selfishness of men in every other grade Professor Owen, and Dr. Wilks, would be utterly scandalof life, and postponing indefinitely the possible acceptance ized and horrified. If any one were to propose to them to of the humaner creed to which the act for preventing have all the murderers under the sentence of death put cruelty to domestic animals gives at once public expression under curari, and their bile-ducts opened by a surgical and a new authority.

operation in order to inject various drugs, this process, with And, as a matter of fact, I do observe that since this sub- | frequent reopenings of the wound, lasting for eight hours ject was first discussed amongst 118, the plıysiologists have at a time, and the patients' lungs being kept all the time caused a considerable change for the worse in the profes- artificially in motion by the use of an engine in order to sional estimates formed of the anguish inflicted by this prevent their death through that paralysis of the lungs kind of experiment;-estimates changed for the worse which curari causes, not only would these gentlemen be chiefly in this, that there is a visible tendency now to justly indignant, but all England.would expect, and rightly whitewash even those most "cruel vivisectors” whom the expect, the humanest of our professions to lead the cry great physiologists of the past most earnestly denounced. against a cold-blooded proposal. The criminal himself At the time the commission on vivisection was sitting, six would no doubt ask, "Is thy servant a dog, that he should years ago, no expression could be found too strong for the suffer this thing?" and the inquiry would be most pertinent. cruelty of physiologists like Magendie. The late Professor For when this treatment is inflicted upou a few score of Sharpey, for instance, spoke of some of Magendie's experi- dogs, and we indignantly denounce it, we are rebuked by ments as exciting "a very strong feeling of abhorrence, not this most humane of professions for our grossly sentimental in the public mind merely, but especially among physiolo- and injurious comments. And yet Dr. Anthony, the pupil gists,' and he characterized one of these experiments as and dissector of Sir (harles Bell, assured us when he was

giving his evidence to the Royal Commission, that in his have a true sympathy for them. But I can not conceive it opinion the domestic animals are subject to the same possible that we can once begin to treat the lower races of special sensibility of the nerves—hyperæsthesia, the doctors animals as destined to benefit us chiefly by their agonies, call it-to which civilization has rendered civilized human without extinguishing in ourselves that genuine sympathy beings liable.

which our common nature and common susceptibilities, I may be asked how far I would carry my objection to and indeed, as many men now hold, our common origin, the infliction of pain upon animals for the sake of men. ought to excite. I think that in a rough way we may put And I think the question a most reasonable one. Unless ourselves in the place of the lower animals, and ask what we are prepared to lay down some principle for our guidance we, with their pains, and their sensitiveness, and their in these matters, there is nothing but bewilderment on the prospects of life, and pain, and happiness, might fairly exhumanitarian side of the question, while the scientific men pect of beings of much greater power, but of common sushave the advantage of consistency in claiming to inflict ceptibilities. Small pains, and sufferings, and risks, such any pain whatever of which they think the result likely to as we ourselves would willingly undergo (were our lots as yield a decided balance of good. Yet I may say in passing simple as theirs, and were there none dependent upon us) that even they can not persuade men to take much account for the sake of helping those above us, we may fairly reof the same sort of calculation of the amount of health to quire of the creatures beneath us. I, for my part, have albe gained or life to be saved, where the set-off on the other ways thought that the genuine inoculations—theonly really side is not animal suffering, but a very much smaller very fruitful experiments amongst those of recent timesamount of human liberty, pleasure, or privilege to be re

should be included in this class, except in the rare cases nounced or forbidden. The absolute prohibition of all alco where they are known to involve far more torture than the holic drinks, except as a drug in the pharmacopeia of the ordinary diseases to which animals are liable, especially as medical man, would probably save a hundred times as these inoculations may well benefit not only men but the many lives, and a thousand times as many constitutions, very creatures which suffer them. Indeed, there have been as all the painful experiments upon animals put together; not a few medical men who have tried the effect of such inyet no combination of doctors will ever force that upon us, oculation upon themselves; and there would have been and I think it is quite right that they should not be able to many more of such experimenters were not the claims of do so. Again, the refusal of weak nations to defend them kindred among men so much more urgent than any claims selves against their adversaries would probably prevent infi- amongst the lower animals possibly can be. But directly nitely more cruel deaths and crueler wounds than all the tor you come to the point where no man would willingly untures inflicted on animals since the science of medicine had dergo the torture you propose to inflict, and where any its rise have contributed to the same result; and yet men are man who proposed to inflict it on another human being, quite right in not saving their lives and their constitutions even though he were a condemned criminal, would be at the cost of their liberty and their national life. I believe thought to be degrading his humanity by the proposalthat no argument is practically weaker with men, in a case then I say you also reach the point where to inflict it upon where moral considerations can be ranged on the other one of the lower creatures for the sake of man, is utterly deside, than the plea of utility to health and life. You might structive of the true tie between all sensitive beings, and of prevent numberless and complex diseases by prohibiting the true attitude with which civilization itself requires that the marriage of men and women of unsound constitutions, we should regard the fellow-creatures in the ranks of life bebut moral considerations will not allow the state to do it.

neath us. Yet I tried in vain in the Commission on ViviNow what is the moral consideration which, in my belief, section to get any physiologist to put limits of any kind to will outweigh all the pleas of the vivisectionists, and pre the agony which he thought it right to inflict for what he vent mankind from accepting their estimate of the question

called "a sufficient end." Now it seems to me that if we at issue? I believe it is this that while we are bound to are to separate the lower races of animals so entirely from keep animal life in subordination to that of man, we are man, that we may inflict any amount of anguish upon them also bound to kill humanely any creatures whose destruc purely for our own benefit-anguish which we should feel tion is needful for our life, and regard them and treat them it utterly atrocious to inflict on the most criminal for the as bona fide fellow-creatures, in so far as their nature is akin same end-we sever all ties of sympathy with the lower to ours, and to associate our happiness with theirs. We are races of animals, and compel ourselves to assume toward indeed bound to spare them just as much as we, if we were them the moral attitude of selfish tormentors. And the rein the power of a higher race as they are in our power, sult of that would, I believe, be so disastrous to our civilizashould expect to be spared by that higher race, ourselves. tion, that we should lose infinitely more in the tone and Thus it seems to me that all those sufferings in which the character of our humanity than we could ever gain in the lower animals only share our own fate-as the horse, for in lives we might save, or the limbs we might heal, or the stance, shares the liabilities of his rider in war, or in dan diseases we might cure, by the knowledge derived from gerous journeys; or as the dog shares the abbreviated life such tortures or from the sanatory resources which they and the various hardships of the St. Bernard monks in their might reveal. work of mercy at the Swiss hospice-are perfectly legitimate. Such sufferings of the lower races tend to draw them

PADDLE YOUR OWN CANOE.-This expressive phrase closer to us, and to make us more kindly to them; and

seems to have first appeared in a poem published in Hartherefore sentimental writings about such mild discipline per's Magazine (New York, May, 1854). The following as that of the whip or the reins, or the captivity of cage

stanzas give a fair example of the whole: birds, or any other pains which mutatis mutandis are of the

Voyager upon life's sea, same order as we would be willingly subjected to ourselves

To yourself be true; by a higher race for the sake of being identified with the

And, whate'er your lot may be, life and aims of that higher race, sound maudlin, unmanly,

Paddle your own canoe. and absurd. Suffering of some kind is the fate of all mortal beings; and, indeed, the sufferings of wild animals

Leave to Heaven, in humble trust, which have no association with man are probably quite as

All you will to do; severe, and not nearly so ennobling, as the sufferings of do

But if you would succeed, you must mesticated animals when humanely trained by those who

Paddle your own canoe.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

BEHIND THE SCENES.

[This bright little poem was written on the occasion of a wedding among the C. L. S. C. tribe of California. The high contracting parties were a Mr. Jones and a Miss Bell, members of the Society of Friends. She has been a Chautauquan. If all readers of the poem could know how many Chautauquans were interested in the wedding, and especially how popular and beloved the lady has been as a single Bell, their appreciation of the poem would be greatly enhanced. -ED. CHAUTAUQUAN.] All good Chautauquans now burn midnight oil,

And hang enraptured o'er the classic page,
Pore over torsos, statues, busts, and spoil

Their eyes on frescoes dim with dust and age.

Thus late I mused, when'o'er my sight there crept

A mist which grew into a mighty cloud; Strange sounds assailed my ears, and round me swept

The forms which erst did old Olympus crowd.

Jove nodded to me from his lofty seat,

Endymion and Diana wandered by, Venus I saw, and Mercury's flying feet,

While, last and least, young Cupid met my eye.

Low at his beauteous mother's feet he lay,

Clapping his hands and quite convulsed with glee, Yet mid his laughter I could hear him say,

I've caught 'em both, they'll ne'er escape from me!

She thought her Quaker garb a coat of mail,

He fancied he could baffle all my arts; Ha! ha! we'll see them now begin to quail,

I've sent an arrow straight through both their hearts!”

“Hush! silly child," said Venus; but his side

I neared and begged his victims' names he'd tell. Up sprang the boy and frowned—“Victims!” he cried,

“I've hung a chime where was a single Bell!”

have no money, you can't play. Well, I suppose I must be seeing after my customers," said he, glancing over the plain.

"Good day," said I.

"Good day," said the man, slowly, but without moving, as it is reflection. After a moment or two, looking at me inquiringly, be added, “Out of employ ?”

“Yes," said I, “out of employ."

The man measured me with his eye as I lay on the ground. All length he said, ' May I speak a word or two to you, my lord ?'' "As many as you please," said I.

"Then just come a little out of hearing, a little further on the grass, if you please, my lord.”

Why do you call me my lord ?" said I. as I arose and followed him.

“We of the thimble always calls our customers lords," said the man; “but I won't call you such a foolish name any more; come along."

The man walked along the plain till he came to the side of a dry pit, when, looking around to see that no one was nigh, he laid his table on the grass, and, sitting down with his legs over the side of the pit, he motioned me to do the same. “So you are in want of employ,” said he, after I had sat down beside him.

“Yes,” said I, “I am very much in want of employ."
“ I think I can find you some."
“ What kind ?" said I.

Why," said the nian, “ I think you would do to be my bonnet." "Bonnet!” said I, "What is that ?”

*Don't you know? However, no wonder, as you had never heard of the thimble and pea game, but I will tell you.

We of the game are very much exposed; folks when they have lost their money, as those who play with us mostly do, sometimes uses rough language, calls us cheats, and sometimes knocks our hats over our eyes; and what's more, with a kick under our table, causes the top deals to fly off; this is the third table I have used this day, the other two being broken by uncivil customers; so we of the game generally like to have gentlemen go about with us to take our part, and encourage us, though pretending to know nothing about us; for example, when the customer says, 'I'm cheated,' the bonnet must say, 'No, you a'n't, it is all right;' or, when my hat is knocked over my eyes, the bonnet must square, and say, 'I never saw the man before in all my life, but I won't see him ill used;' and so, when they kicks at the table, the bonnet must say, “I won't see the table ill-used, such a nice table, too; besides, I want to play myself;' and then I would say to the bonnet, ‘Thank you, my lord then that finds, wins;' and then the bonnet plays, and I lets the bonnet win.”

“In a word,'' said I, “the bonnet means the man who covers you, even as the real bonnet covers the head."

“Just so," said the man, “I see you are awake, and would soonmake a first-rate bo inet."

• Bonnet," said I. musingly; “bonnet; it is metaphorical."
* Is it?'' said the man,
* Yes,” said I, “like the cant words

“ Bonnet is cant," said the man; “ We of the thimble, as well as all clyfakers and the like, understand cant, as, of course, must every bonnet; so, if you are employed by me, you had better learn it as soon as you can, that we may discourse together without being understood by every one. Besides covering his principal, a bonnet inust have his eyes about him, for the trade of the pea, though a. strictly honest one, is not altogether lawful; so it is the duty of the bonnet, if he sees the constable coming, to say the gorgio's elling."

" That is not cant," said I, that is the language of the Rom many Chals." “Do you know those people ?" said the man.

Perfectly." said I, and their language, too." “I wish I did," said the inan, “ I would give ten pounds and me

more to know the language of the Rommany Chals. There's sonie of it in the language of the pea and thimble; how it came there I don't know, but so it is. I wish I knew it, but it is difficult. You'll make a capital bonnet; shall we close ?"

“What would the wages be?” I demanded.

“Why, to a first-rate bonnet, as I think you would prove, I couldafford to give from forty to fifty shillings a week."

" Is it possible ?'' said I. “Good wages, a'n't they ?'' said the man. "First-rate," said I ; “bonneting is more profitable than reviewing." “Anan?” said the man.

"Or translating; I don't think the Armenian would have paid me at that rate for translating his Esop.”

LAVENGRO.

A DREAM OR DRAMA; OR, A SCHOLAR, A GYPSY,

A PRIEST.

CHAPTER XXVIII.

Presently a man emerged from the tent, bearing before him a rather singular table: it appeared to be of white deal, was exceedingly small at the top, and with very long legs. At a few yards from the entrance he paused and looked round, as if to decide on the direction which he should take. Presently, his eye glancing on me as I lay upon the ground, he started, and appeared for a moment inclined to make off as quick as possible, table and all. In a moment, however, he seemed to recover assurance, and coming up to place where I was, the long legs of the table projecting before him, he cried, "Glad to see you here, my lord.”

“Thank you," said I, “it's a fine day."

“Very fine, my lord; will your lordship play? Them that finds, wins-them that don't finds, loses."

“ Play at what?" said I.
"Only at the thimble and pea, my lord."
“I never heard of such a game.”

“Didn't you? Well, I'll soon teach you,” said he, placing the table down. "All you have to do is to put a sovereign down on my table, and to find the pea, which I put under one of my thimbles. If you find it-and it is easy enough to find it-I give you a sovereign besides your own: for them that finds, wins."

And them that don't find, loses," said I; “no, I don't wish to play." “Why not, my lord ?"

Why, in the first place, I have no money." "Oh, you have no money; that of course alters the case. If you

[ocr errors]
« PredošláPokračovať »